Several epidemiological studies have revealed a number of risk factors that can predispose ALL. Following is the list of such risk factors:
- Exposure to radiation: History of radiation exposure is the most potent risk factor for the development of ALL. Exposure to radiation along with chemotherapy further raises the risk.
- Industrial/Occupational exposure: Regular exposure to carcinogens like benzene and petroleum products has been indicated to increase the risk of ALL.
- Infection with certain viruses like T-cell lymphoma/leukemia virus-1 (HTLV-1) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) has been indicated to increase the risk of developing certain types of ALL.
- Genetic alterations: Some inherited genetic alterations have been reported to be associated with a high incidence rate of ALL, for example (e.g.), Down syndrome (generally caused by chromosomal abnormality), Fanconi anemia, Klinefelter syndrome, Ataxia-telangiectasia, Bloom syndrome, and Neurofibromatosis.
- Age and gender: ALL is more common among young age individuals and among older age individuals. Also, males are affected more compared to females.
- Ethnicity: Incidence of ALL is more common in Caucasians than in African Americans.
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