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Adult hematological malignancies, such as acute myeloid leukemia, are thought to arise through the gradual acquisition of oncogenic mutations within long-lived hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs). Genomic analysis of peripheral blood DNA has recently identified leukemia-associated genetic mutations within otherwise healthy individuals, an observation that is strongly associated with age. These genetic mutations are often found at high frequency, suggesting dominance of a mutant HSC clone. Expansion of clones carrying other mutations not associated with leukemia or larger chromosomal deletions was also observed. This clinical observation has been termed clonal hematopoiesis, a condition associated with increased risk of both hematological malignancy and cardiovascular disease. Here, we discuss the identification of clonal hematopoiesis and its implications on human health, based on the May 2019 International Society for Experimental Hematology New Investigator Committee Webinar.

Original publication




Journal article


Exp Hematol

Publication Date





1 - 5


Animals, Cardiovascular Diseases, Circulating Tumor DNA, Hematologic Neoplasms, Hematopoiesis, Humans, Leukemia, Mutation