Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) is classed as an orphans disease. AML is a rare but a severe disease and is a most common leukemia. It is primarily a disease of the elderly, with an average age of diagnosis of approximately 66. AML results from the acquired changes in the DNA of a developing marrow cell. The marrow cells get converted into the leukemic cells, multiplies into 11 billion or more. AML affects the normal cells which are partially developed and further these cells are unable to perform their functions. These cells are known as leukemia blasts. Leukemia blast grows and survives better than normal cells and also blocks the production of normal cells.
AML is developed in an individual due to the recurrent exposure to element benzene since benzene damages the DNA of a normal marrow cells. As per the Toxic Substance and Disease registry, petroleum products contributes to the majority of benzene in atmosphere half of the exposure to benzene comes from cigarette smoke. AML cases are also seen in patients undergoing chemotherapy (alkylating agents or topoisomerase II inhibitors) or radiation therapy. People with genetic disorders such as Shwachman syndrome, Down syndrome, Diamond Blackfan Syndrome are associated with a risk of AML. Also people with certain blood disorder can develop AML.
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