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December 8, 1969

Effects of L-Asparaginase in Acute Myelocytic Leukemia

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine A, Roswell Park Memorial Institute, Buffalo 14203.

JAMA. 1969;210(10):1919-1921. doi:10.1001/jama.1969.03160360065021

A man with acute myelocytic leukemia was induced into complete remission after a single injection of L-asparaginase 1,000 international units/kg body weight. Nausea, vomiting, fever, weight loss, muscle wasting, hepatic impairment, pancreatitis, hypoinsulinemia, hyperglycemia, fibrinogenopenia, hypocholesterolemia, malabsorption syndrome, and acute brain dysfunctional syndrome developed. These phenomena of L-asparaginase toxicity can be interpreted as induced asparagine deficiency. A "rescue" infusion of L-asparagine was attempted. After relapse eight months later, the patient again attained remission from L-asparaginase.

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