Acute lymphoblastic leukemia is a common childhood cancer that is known to be caused by a number of genetic alterations. Determining what those genetic alterations are at the time of diagnosis may be the key to deciding which treatments to use and determining the probability of patient relapse, says St. Jude Children's Research Hospital's Charles Mullighan. While he has conducted several studies on leukemia-associated mutations over the past several years, Mullighan has also begun to look into the nature of the cell population present in a patient at diagnosis and at relapse.

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