Philadelphia-negative chronic myeloproliferative disorders (CMD) include polycythemia vera (PV), essential thrombocythemia (ET) and primary myelofibrosis (PMF). Angiogenesis is critical in the pathogenesis of PMF. We studied angiogenesis in 115 patients with CMD (23 PV, 24 ET, 46 PMF, 12 post-PV and 10 post-ET myelofibrosis) by assessment of microvessel density (MVD) in bone marrow (BM). Kruskall-Wallis analysis of variance showed that patients with PMF had significantly higher values of MVD than those with PV (P <0.001), ET (P <0.001) and controls (P <0.001). Mann-Whitney U-test demonstrated that patients with PMF at the prefibrotic stage had significantly higher MVD values than those with ET (P = 0.02). Patients with post-PV myelofibrosis showed significantly higher MVD values than those with PV (P <0.001), as did patients with post-ET myelofibrosis compared with ET (P <0.001). In patients with CMD, the multivariate generalized linear regression model showed that the JAK2 (V617F) mutational burden (P = 0.01), serum lactate dehydrogenase level (P = 0.003), and anaemia (P <0.001) independently correlated with MVD. In summary, this study indicates that assessment of BM angiogenesis, as measured by MVD, may be a useful additional tool in the histopathological definition of CMD.
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