* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received May 26, 2010; Revision received June 16, 2010
This paper reviews chromosomal abnormalities observed in oncological diseases, the history of discovery of chromosomal translocations (a widespread type of chromosomal abnormalities), and statistical data showing a correlation between translocations and emergence of oncological diseases (in particular leukemia). The importance of detection of minimal residual disease (MRD) in treatment of leukemia associated with translocations is discussed along with methods of MRD diagnosis, followed by description of a novel diagnostic procedure for the detection of single chimeric mRNA molecules serving as MRD markers. This procedure includes a number of improvements, of which the most important is the use of a PCR version of the method of nanocolonies (other names are molecular colonies, polonies) that provides for the determination of the absolute titer of RNA tumor markers, excludes false positive results in the detection of chimeric molecules, and significantly exceeds other methods in the sensitivity of MRD detection.
KEY WORDS: chromosomal translocation, leukemia, minimal residual disease, RT-PCR, nanocolonies, molecular colonies, polonies, PCR colonies