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Frequency of RAS gene mutation and its cooperative genetic events in Southeast Asian adult acute myeloid leukemia.RAS gene as one of the most frequently mutated genes in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) has become an attractive target for molecular therapy. The role of oncogenic RAS and its associated genetic events in AML are not yet defined. We examined the frequency of RAS mutation in 239 Thai de novo adult AML patients using polymerase chain reaction-single-strand conformational polymorphism analysis. Thirty-five RAS mutations were found in 32 cases (13%) predominantly classified as M1/M2 (53%) followed by M4/M5 subtype (38%). Ten cases were positive for N-RAS codon 12, 11 cases for N-RAS codon 61, 13 cases for N-RAS codon 13, and one case for K-RAS codon 13. No mutation was found in K-RAS exon 2 or H-RAS. The most common base substitution was the G to A transition at codon 13. Most M1/M2 cases had mutations at codon 12 or 13, whereas M4/M5 cases preferentially affected codon 61. Half of the patients with RAS mutations had abnormal karyotypes with the majority involving chromosomes 21, 11 and 7. Four patients had core-binding factor leukemia and four additional patients had coexisting FLT3 or AML1 mutation. One patient had RAS, FLT3 and t(8;21) and the other had RAS, AML1 point mutation and del(9q). In conclusion, mutation of RAS gene was not as common in the Thais as in the western population. Several additional genetic abnormalities occurred in RAS-mutated patients. Future molecular-targeting approaches should take into account the multiple genetic events that coexist with RAS mutations in AML patients.