We describe a 69-year-old Japanese male with acute leukemia with a CD7+ and CD56+ immunophenotype presenting with multiple lymphadenopathy. He was treated with idarubicin and cytosine arabinoside. Although the leukemia showed partial response, the patient did not achieve complete remission. He died of sepsis due to severe neutropenia after the third course of chemotherapy. His autopsy revealed blast infiltration in the lymph nodes, liver, spleen and vertebral bone marrow. Recently, CD7+ and CD56+ myeloid/natural killer precursor acute leukemia has been associated with a poor prognosis. Our case illustrates that myeloid/natural killer cell precursor acute leukemia shows some response to intensive chemotherapy for acute myeloid leukemia, but such therapy is insufficient to effect a cure. To overcome the resistance of this disease to chemotherapy, further studies should explore other treatment strategies.
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