Two girls, each less than 2 yr of age, developed acute megakaryoblastic leukemia (malignant myelosclerosis). Both presented with anemia, severe thrombocytopenia, and a low percentage of blasts in their peripheral blood. Their marrow showed marked reticulin fibrosis with an increase in blasts and immature megakaryocytes. The blasts stained negatively for myeloperoxidase and Sudan Black B, but showed acid phosphatase (ACP) and alpha-naphthyl acetate esterase (ANAE) activity inhibitable by sodium fluoride. They were identified as megakaryoblasts by the platelet peroxidase reaction. Cytogenetic studies showed multiple chromosomal abnormalities in both cases. Chemotherapy with vincristine, prednisone, and L-asparaginase was without effect, while daunorubicin and cytosine arabinoside induced a complete remission in one case. The second case responded to a combination of cytosine arabinoside, daunorubicin, and 6-thioguanine. This article documents that acute megakaryoblastic leukemia occurs in early childhood and describes its clinical, pathologic, and cytogenetic features. Previous reports of childhood “myelofibrosis” are reviewed, and their possible relationship with acute megakaryoblastic leukemia is discussed.

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