The pharmacokinetics among children has been altered dynamically. The difference between children and adults is caused by immaturity in things such as metabolic enzymes and transport proteins. The periods when these alterations happen vary from a few days to some years after birth. We hypothesized that the effect of gene polymorphisms associated with the dose of medicine could be influenced by age. In this study, we analyzed 51 patients with childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) retrospectively. We examined the associations between the polymorphism in NUDT15 and clinical data, especially the dose of 6-mercaptopurine (6-MP). Ten of the patients were heterozygous for the variant allele in NUDT15. In patients under 7 years old with NUDT15 variant allele, the average administered dose of 6-MP was lower than that for the patients homozygous for the wild-type allele (P=0.04). Genotyping of NUDT15 could be a beneficial to estimate the tolerated dose of 6-MP for patients with childhood ALL, especially at a preschool age in Japan. Furthermore, the analysis with stratification by age might be useful in pharmacogenomics among children.
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