What is Myeloproliferative Neoplasm?
Myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) are a group of diseases that affect how normal blood cells are made in your bone marrow.
Within cells, there are coded instructions that control how the cell should act, and each section of DNA containing these instructions is called a gene. In MPN, abnormalities develop in the DNA in stem cells in the bone marrow, resulting in the overproduction of blood cells. This DNA damage is called an acquired mutation. The bone marrow also creates an excess of cytokines, which are substances similar to growth factors. Along with changes to stem cells, people with MPNs may experience changes to the structure of the bone marrow (the bone marrow microenvironment). Each damaged stem cell divides and creates a clone — a group of identical cells, all carrying the same mutation. This is why MPN is sometimes referred to as a clonal disorder.
Common Types of Myeloproliferative Neoplasm
There are three main types of Myeloproliferative Neoplasms:
- Polycythemia Vera (PV): Too many red blood cells.
- Essential Thrombocythemia (ET): Too many platelets, which are the cells that control bleeding
- Primary Myelofibrosis (PMF): Bone marrow tissue is replaced by fibrous scar-like tissue. As this builds up, your blood cells can no longer develop properly inside your bone marrow.