- Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common malignancy in children, but remarkable progress in methods of chemotherapy has increased the cure rate to 80%. The leukemic cells called blasts are eliminated within 7 days of chemotherapy. Clinically, the blast count is monitored directly with the use of blood smears on the basis of specific genetic markers and immunophenotyping methods such as flow cytometry. In this article, we present preliminary results, obtained with the use of Fourier-transform infrared microspectroscopy and cluster analysis, of an approach to monitoring the progress made with chemotherapy in 1 B-cell and 2 T-cell pediatric ALL patients. Our results indicated that the biological marker derived from the spectra did not provide accurate prediction of the progress made with chemotherapy. However, cluster analysis of FTIR-MSP spectra provided good classification of the samples with and without blasts, which correlate satisfactorily with clinical data. Extensive studies are required to substantiate our findings statistically which may have potential application of FTIM in the diagnosis and follow-up of various types of malignancies.