JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

The 2016 revision of WHO classification of myeloproliferative neoplasms: Clinical and molecular advances

T Barbui, J Thiele, H Gisslinger, G Finazzi, A M Vannucchi, A Tefferi
Blood Reviews 2016, 30 (6): 453-459
27341755
Clinical evidence supports the need of changing the diagnostic criteria of the 2008 updated WHO classification for polycythemia vera (PV), essential thrombocythemia (ET) and primary myelofibrosis (PMF). In JAK2-mutated patients who show characteristic bone marrow (BM) morphology, clinical studies demonstrated that a hemoglobin level of 16.5g/dL in men and 16.0g/dl for women or a hematocrit value of 49% in men and 48% in women are the optimal cut off levels for distinguishing JAK2-mutated ET from "masked/prodromal" PV. Therefore BM morphology was upgraded to a major diagnostic criterion. Regarding ET the key issue was to improve standardization of prominent BM features enhancing differentiation between "true" ET and prefibrotic/early primary myelofibrosis (prePMF). These two entities have shown a different epidemiology and clinical outcomes. Concerning prePMF a more explicit clinical characterization of minor criteria is mandated for an improved distinction from ET and overt PMF and accurate diagnosis and outcome prediction.

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