Acute lymphoblastic leukemias with phenotypic characteristics of natural killer cell derived lineage are extremely uncommon. We identified an ALL with a phenotype consistent with an NK-cell of origin. The blasts underwent a proliferative response to r-IL2 in culture but showed no spontaneous or r-IL2 or γ-INF induced cytotoxicity. With r-IL2 stimulation however, the tumor cells demonstrated a dramatic acquisition of low density CD8 surface positivity and a loss of CD11b expression after short term culture. By comparison to ALL of B or T lineage, NK ALL likely represents an early stage of bone marrow derived NK-cell precursor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)735-743
Number of pages9
JournalLeukemia Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1989


  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • CD11b
  • CD8
  • interleukin 2
  • natural killer cell
  • phenotype

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Acute lymphoblastic leukemia of NK-cell lineage: Responses to IL-2'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this