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1.  Epstein-Barr Virus-Positivity in Tumor has no Correlation with the Clinical Outcomes of Patients with Angioimmunoblastic T-cell Lymphoma 
Background/Aims
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is involved in the pathogenesis of angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma (AILT), but its precise role and prognostic impact are not clear. This study aimed to evaluate the incidence of EBV-postitivity in the tumor and bone marrow (BM) samples from AILT patients, and their correlations with the clinical variables and patient survival.
Methods
Seventy AILT cases were identified over a period of 8 years. Twenty seven cases were investigated for their EBV tumor status, and 10 BM samples of these patients were investigated for their EBV status with using in situ hybridization (ISH). EBV PCR was performed for the BM mononuclear cells in 8 cases.
Results
Among the 27 tumor specimens, ten (37%) were EBV-positive. Only CD20-negativity in tumor correlated with the EBV-positivity (p=0.035). In 13 (48%) patients, gross tumor involvement was recognized by hematoxylin-eosin staining at the time of diagnosis. Among the 10 patients who had additional BM slides available, there were 3 with BM involvement, and none showed EBV positive results on ISH. EBV PCR of the BM mononuclear cells revealed one-positive case among 8 patients. This patient was negative for both BM involvement and EBV ISH. The median overall survival of the 25 treated patients was 48.9 months (95% CI: 18.6~79.2 months). Neither overall survival nor progression-free survival was related with EBV-positivity of the tumor.
Conclusions
EBV-positivity of tumor had no impact on the prognosis of AILT patients.
doi:10.3904/kjim.2008.23.1.30
PMCID: PMC2686953  PMID: 18363277
Epstein-Barr virus; Angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma; Survival
2.  Primary spleen extranodal NK/T cell lymphoma, nasal type, with bone marrow involvement and CD30 positive expression: a case report and literature review 
Diagnostic Pathology  2014;9(1):169.
Aims
Primay spleen NK/T cell lymphoma is very rare. We report a case of 39-years-old male of primary splenic NK/T cell lymphoma with bone marrow involvement and CD30 positive expression.
Case description
The patient had high fever for 2 months, and CT scan revealed a diffuse splenomegaly without hepatomegaly. The diagnosis was established by splenectomy specimen and bone marrow biopsy. Normal spleen structure was destroyed by the diffusely infiltrated neoplastic cells, and one of the splenic hilar lymph nodes was involved. The lymphomatous cells were mainly medium-sized, mixed with small and large cells with pleomorphic nuclei and conspicuous nucleoli. Angiocentric growth pattern was present, with mitotic figures and apoptotic bodies easily being found. These neoplastic cells demonstrated a typical immunophenotype of CD2, CD3ε, CD7, CD4, CD56, TIA-1, Granzyme B, CD30 positive, and CD5, CD8, CD20, CD79a negative. The Epstein-Barr virus encoded RNAs (EBERs) genomes were also found in tumor cells by in situ hybridization, while no clonal rearrangement of the T cell receptor-γ genes (TCRG) was found. Biopsy of bone marrow revealed scattered atypical cells presented with a predominantly intrasinusoidal distribution. A diagnosis as primary spleen NK/T cell lymphoma, nasal type (ENKTL) with CD30 expression and bone marrow involvement was finally made. The patient received chemotherapy and was still alive 6 months after splenectomy.
Clinical significance
Primary spleen ENKTL is very rare, it should be made with the combination of clinical feature, PET-CT image, and pathological characteristics, and should be distinguished from other lymphomas or leukemia involved in spleen.
Virtual Slides
The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/13000_2014_169
doi:10.1186/s13000-014-0169-9
PMCID: PMC4167522  PMID: 25183396
3.  Persistent Anemia in a Patient with Diffuse Large B Cell Lymphoma: Pure Red Cell Aplasia Associated with Latent Epstein-Barr Virus Infection in Bone Marrow 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2007;22(Suppl):S167-S170.
We report a case of pure red cell aplasia (PRCA), which was initially suspected as a result of bone marrow involvement of diffuse large B cell lymphoma. Persistent anemia without an obvious cause was observed in a 47-yr-old man diagnosed with relapsed diffuse large B cell lymphoma. The bone marrow study showed only erythroid hypoplasia without the evidence of bone marrow involvement with lymphoma cells, thus PRCA was suggested. However, parvovirus infection was excluded as a potential cause of PRCA because of negative IgM anti-parvovirus B19 antibody and negative parvovirus PCR in the serum. Latent Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection of bone marrow was suggested by in situ hybridization with EBV-encoded small RNA (EBER) that showed a strong positive expression in bone marrow cells. Thus, PRCA was thought to be associated with latent EBV infection in bone marrow cells. Although the finding of unexplained anemia is a possible predictor of bone marrow involvement with lymphoma cells, PRCA as a result of a viral infection including EBV should be considered in lymphoma patients. This is the first report of the occurrence of PRCA associated with latent EBV infection in a patient with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
doi:10.3346/jkms.2007.22.S.S167
PMCID: PMC2694371  PMID: 17923747
Red-Cell Aplasia; Epstein-Barr Virus; Lymphoma
4.  Epstein-Barr virus-associated lymphoproliferative disorder developed following autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation for relapsing Hodgkin’s lymphoma 
Oncology Letters  2012;3(6):1203-1206.
Post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLDs) are lymphoid or plasmacytic proliferations that develop as a consequence of immunosuppression in a recipient of a solid organ, bone marrow or stem cell allograft. The development of PTLDs is usually associated with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and the disorder is also termed EBV-associated lymphoproliferative disorder (LPD). The development of PTLD is a rare complication in autologous bone marrow/peripheral blood stem cell transplantation. In the present study, we report a case of EBV-associated LPD which developed following autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation for relapsing Hodgkin’s lymphoma. A 51-year-old male presented with swelling of the left cervical lymph nodes. A biopsy revealed nodular sclerosis classical Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Following four courses of ABVd (adriamycin, bleomycin, vinblastine, dacarbazine) therapy, the Hodgkin’s lymphoma relapsed. CHASE (cyclophosphamide, etoposide, cytarabine, dexamethasone) therapy and autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation were performed. In the 128 days following the transplantation, lymph node swelling was noted and a biopsy specimen demonstrated EBV-associated LPD. The serum copy number of EBV-DNA was 2.7×103 copies/ml. The occurrence of EBV-associated LPD may be on the rise due to the increased number of patients undergoing immunosuppression therapy. The measurement of the serum EBV-DNA copy number and the detection of EBV-infected atypical lymphocytes using in situ hybridization are significant in establishing an early accurate diagnosis and initiating the correct treatment for EBV-associated LPD in patients with immunosuppression.
doi:10.3892/ol.2012.670
PMCID: PMC3392596  PMID: 22783418
Epstein-Barr virus; lymphoproliferative disorder; Hodgkin’s lymphoma; autologous peripheral blood stem cell transplantation
5.  Extracorporeal Photophoresis 
Executive Summary
Objective
To assess the effectiveness, safety and cost-effectiveness of extracorporeal photophoresis (ECP) for the treatment of refractory erythrodermic cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL) and refractory chronic graft versus host disease (cGvHD).
Background
Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma
Cutaneous T cell lymphoma (CTCL) is a general name for a group of skin affecting disorders caused by malignant white blood cells (T lymphocytes). Cutaneous T cell lymphoma is relatively uncommon and represents slightly more than 2% of all lymphomas in the United States. The most frequently diagnosed form of CTCL is mycosis fungoides (MF) and its leukemic variant Sezary syndrome (SS). The relative frequency and disease-specific 5-year survival of 1,905 primary cutaneous lymphomas classified according to the World Health Organization-European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (WHO-EORTC) classification (Appendix 1). Mycosis fungoides had a frequency of 44% and a disease specific 5-year survival of 88%. Sezary syndrome had a frequency of 3% and a disease specific 5-year survival of 24%.
Cutaneous T cell lymphoma has an annual incidence of approximately 0.4 per 100,000 and it mainly occurs in the 5th to 6th decade of life, with a male/female ratio of 2:1. Mycosis fungoides is an indolent lymphoma with patients often having several years of eczematous or dermatitic skin lesions before the diagnosis is finally established. Mycosis fungoides commonly presents as chronic eczematous patches or plaques and can remain stable for many years. Early in the disease biopsies are often difficult to interpret and the diagnosis may only become apparent by observing the patient over time.
The clinical course of MF is unpredictable. Most patients will live normal lives and experience skin symptoms without serious complications. Approximately 10% of MF patients will experience progressive disease involving lymph nodes, peripheral blood, bone marrow and visceral organs. A particular syndrome in these patients involves erythroderma (intense and usually widespread reddening of the skin from dilation of blood vessels, often preceding or associated with exfoliation), and circulating tumour cells. This is known as SS. It has been estimated that approximately 5-10% of CTCL patients have SS. Patients with SS have a median survival of approximately 30 months.
Chronic Graft Versus Host Disease
Allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is a treatment used for a variety of malignant and nonmalignant disease of the bone marrow and immune system. The procedure is often associated with serious immunological complications, particularly graft versus host disease (GvHD). A chronic form of GvHD (cGvHD) afflicts many allogeneic HCT recipients, which results in dysfunction of numerous organ systems or even a profound state of immunodeficiency. Chronic GVHD is the most frequent cause of poor long-term outcome and quality of life after allogeneic HCT. The syndrome typically develops several months after transplantation, when the patient may no longer be under the direct care of the transplant team.
Approximately 50% of patients with cGvHD have limited disease and a good prognosis. Of the patients with extensive disease, approximately 60% will respond to treatment and eventually be able to discontinue immunosuppressive therapy. The remaining patients will develop opportunistic infection, or require prolonged treatment with immunosuppressive agents.
Chronic GvHD occurs in at least 30% to 50% of recipients of transplants from human leukocyte antigen matched siblings and at least 60% to 70% of recipients of transplants from unrelated donors. Risk factors include older age of patient or donor, higher degree of histoincompatibility, unrelated versus related donor, use of hematopoietic cells obtained from the blood rather than the marrow, and previous acute GvHD. Bhushan and Collins estimated that the incidence of severe cGvHD has probably increased in recent years because of the use of more unrelated transplants, donor leukocyte infusions, nonmyeloablative transplants and stem cells obtained from the blood rather than the marrow. The syndrome typically occurs 4 to 7 months after transplantation but may begin as early as 2 months or as late as 2 or more years after transplantation. Chronic GvHD may occur by itself, evolve from acute GvHD, or occur after resolution of acute GvHD.
The onset of the syndrome may be abrupt but is frequently insidious with manifestations evolving gradually for several weeks. The extent of involvement varies significantly from mild involvement limited to a few patches of skin to severe involvement of numerous organ systems and profound immunodeficiency. The most commonly involved tissues are the skin, liver, mouth, and eyes. Patients with limited disease have localized skin involvement, evidence of liver dysfunction, or both, whereas those with more involvement of the skin or involvement of other organs have extensive disease.
Treatment
 
Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma
The optimal management of MF is undetermined because of its low prevalence, and its highly variable natural history, with frequent spontaneous remissions and exacerbations and often prolonged survival.
Nonaggressive approaches to therapy are usually warranted with treatment aimed at improving symptoms and physical appearance while limiting toxicity. Given that multiple skin sites are usually involved, the initial treatment choices are usually topical or intralesional corticosteroids or phototherapy using psoralen (a compound found in plants which make the skin temporarily sensitive to ultraviolet A) (PUVA). PUVA is not curative and its influence on disease progression remains uncertain. Repeated courses are usually required which may lead to an increased risk of both melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancer. For thicker plaques, particularly if localized, radiotherapy with superficial electrons is an option.
“Second line” therapy for early stage disease is often topical chemotherapy, radiotherapy or total skin electron beam radiation (TSEB).
Treatment of advanced stage (IIB-IV) MF usually consists of topical or systemic therapy in refractory or rapidly progressive SS.
Bone marrow transplantation and peripheral blood stem cell transplantation have been used to treat many malignant hematologic disorders (e.g., leukemias) that are refractory to conventional treatment. Reports on the use of these procedures for the treatment of CTCL are limited and mostly consist of case reports or small case series.
Chronic Graft Versus Host Disease
Patients who develop cGvHD require reinstitution of immunosuppressive medication (if already discontinued) or an increase in dosage and possibly addition of other agents. The current literature regarding cGvHD therapy is less than optimal and many recommendations about therapy are based on common practices that await definitive testing. Patients with disease that is extensive by definition but is indolent in clinical appearance may respond to prednisone. However, patients with more aggressive disease are treated with higher doses of corticosteroids and/or cyclosporine.
Numerous salvage therapies have been considered in patients with refractory cGvHD, including ECP. Due to uncertainty around salvage therapies, Bhushan and Collins suggested that ideally, patients with refractory cGvHD should be entered into clinical trials.
Two Ontario expert consultants jointly estimated that there may be approximately 30 new erythrodermic treatment resistant CTCL patients and 30 new treatment resistant cGvHD patients per year who are unresponsive to other forms of therapy and may be candidates for ECP.
Extracorporeal photopheresis is a procedure that was initially developed as a treatment for CTCL, particularly SS.
Current Technique
Extracorporeal photopheresis is an immunomodulatory technique based on pheresis of light sensitive cells. Whole blood is removed from patients followed by pheresis. Lymphocytes are separated by centrifugation to create a concentrated layer of white blood cells. The lymphocyte layer is treated with methoxsalen (a drug that sensitizes the lymphocytes to light) and exposed to UVA, following which the lymphocytes are returned to the patient. Red blood cells and plasma are returned to the patient between each cycle.
Photosensitization is achieved by administering methoxsalen to the patient orally 2 hours before the procedure, or by injecting methoxsalen directly ino the leucocyte rich fraction. The latter approach avoids potential side effects such as nausea, and provides a more consistent drug level within the machine.
In general, from the time the intravenous line is inserted until the white blood cells are returned to the patient takes approximately 2.5-3.5 hours.
For CTCL, the treatment schedule is generally 2 consecutive days every 4 weeks for a median of 6 months. For cGvHD, an expert in the field estimated that the treatment schedule would be 3 times a week for the 1st month, then 2 consecutive days every 2 weeks after that (i.e., 4 treatments a month) for a median of 6 to 9 months.
Regulatory Status
The UVAR XTS Photopheresis System is licensed by Health Canada as a Class 3 medical device (license # 7703) for the “palliative treatment of skin manifestations of CTCL.” It is not licensed for the treatment of cGvHD.
UVADEX (sterile solution methoxsalen) is not licensed by Health Canada, but can be used in Canada via the Special Access Program. (Personal communication, Therakos, February 16, 2006)
According to the manufacturer, the UVAR XTS photopheresis system licensed by Health Canada can also be used with oral methoxsalen. (Personal communication, Therakos, February 16, 2006) However, oral methoxsalen is associated with side effects, must be taken by the patient in advance of ECP, and has variable absorption in the gastrointestinal tract.
According to Health Canada, UVADEX is not approved for use in Canada. In addition, a review of the Product Monographs of the methoxsalen products that have been approved in Canada showed that none of them have been approved for oral administration in combination with the UVAR XTS photophoresis system for “the palliative treatment of the skin manifestations of cutaneous T-cell Lymphoma”.
In the United States, the UVAR XTS Photopheresis System is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for “use in the ultraviolet-A (UVA) irradiation in the presence of the photoactive drug methoxsalen of extracorporeally circulating leukocyte-enriched blood in the palliative treatment of the skin manifestations of CTCL in persons who have not been responsive to other therapy.”
UVADEX is approved by the FDA for use in conjunction with UVR XTS photopheresis system for “use in the ultraviolet-A (UVA) irradiation in the presence of the photoactive drug methoxsalen of extracorporeally circulating leukocyte-enriched blood in the palliative treatment of the skin manifestations of CTCL in persons who have not been responsive to other therapy.”
The use of the UVAR XTS photopheresis system or UVADEX for cGvHD is an off-label use of a FDA approved device/drug.
Summary of Findings
The quality of the trials was examined.
As stated by the GRADE Working Group, the following definitions were used in grading the quality of the evidence.
Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma
Overall, there is low-quality evidence that ECP improves response rates and survival in patients with refractory erythrodermic CTCL (Table 1).
Limitations in the literature related to ECP for the treatment of refractory erythrodermic CTCL include the following:
Different treatment regimens.
Variety of forms of CTCL (and not necessarily treatment resistant) - MF, erythrodermic MF, SS.
SS with peripheral blood involvement → role of T cell clonality reporting?
Case series (1 small crossover RCT with several limitations)
Small sample sizes.
Retrospective.
Response criteria not clearly defined/consistent.
Unclear how concomitant therapy contributed to responses.
Variation in definitions of concomitant therapy
Comparison to historical controls.
Some patients were excluded from analysis because of progression of disease, toxicity and other reasons.
Unclear/strange statistics
Quality of life not reported as an outcome of interest.
The reported CR range is ~ 16% to 23% and the overall reported CR/PR range is ~ 33% to 80%.
The wide range in reported responses to ECP appears to be due to the variability of the patients treated and the way in which the data were presented and analyzed.
Many patients, in mostly retrospective case series, were concurrently on other therapies and were not assessed for comparability of diagnosis or disease stage (MF versus SS; erythrodermic versus not erythrodermic). Blood involvement in patients receiving ECP (e.g., T cell clonality) was not consistently reported, especially in earlier studies. The definitions of partial and complete response also are not standardized or consistent between studies.
Quality of life was reported in one study; however, the scale was developed by the authors and is not a standard validated scale.
Adverse events associated with ECP appear to be uncommon and most involve catheter related infections and hypotension caused by volume depletion.
GRADE Quality of Studies – Extracorporeal Photopheresis for Refractory Erythrodermic Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma
Chronic Graft-Versus-Host Disease
Overall, there is low-quality evidence that ECP improves response rates and survival in patients with refractory cGvHD (Table 2).
Patients in the studies had stem cell transplants due to a variety of hematological disorders (e.g., leukemias, aplastic anemia, thalassemia major, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, non Hodgkin’s lymphoma).
In 2001, The Blue Cross Blue Shield Technology Evaluation Centre concluded that ECP meets the TEC criteria as treatment of cGvHD that is refractory to established therapy.
The Catalan health technology assessment (also published in 2001) concluded that ECP is a new but experimental therapeutic alternative for the treatment of the erythrodermal phase of CTCL and cGvHD in allogenic HPTC and that this therapy should be evaluated in the framework of a RCT.
Quality of life (Lansky/Karnofsky play performance score) was reported in 1 study.
The patients in the studies were all refractory to steroids and other immunosuppressive agents, and these drugs were frequently continued concomitantly with ECP.
Criteria for assessment of organ improvement in cGvHD are variable, but PR was typically defined as >50% improvement from baseline parameters and CR as complete resolution of organ involvement.
Followup was variable and incomplete among the studies.
GRADE Quality of Studies – ECP for Refractory cGvHD
Conclusion
As per the GRADE Working Group, overall recommendations consider 4 main factors.
The tradeoffs, taking into account the estimated size of the effect for the main outcome, the confidence limits around those estimates and the relative value placed on the outcome.
The quality of the evidence (Tables 1 and 2).
Translation of the evidence into practice in a specific setting, taking into consideration important factors that could be expected to modify the size of the expected effects such as proximity to a hospital or availability of necessary expertise.
Uncertainty about the baseline risk for the population of interest.
The GRADE Working Group also recommends that incremental costs of healthcare alternatives should be considered explicitly alongside the expected health benefits and harms. Recommendations rely on judgments about the value of the incremental health benefits in relation to the incremental costs. The last column in Table 3 is the overall trade-off between benefits and harms and incorporates any risk/uncertainty.
For refractory erythrodermic CTCL, the overall GRADE and strength of the recommendation is “weak” – the quality of the evidence is “low” (uncertainties due to methodological limitations in the study design in terms of study quality and directness), and the corresponding risk/uncertainty is increased due to an annual budget impact of approximately $1.5M Cdn (based on 30 patients) while the cost-effectiveness of ECP is unknown and difficult to estimate considering that there are no high quality studies of effectiveness. The device is licensed by Health Canada, but the sterile solution of methoxsalen is not licensed.
With an annual budget impact of $1.5 M Cdn (based on 30 patients), and the current expenditure is $1.3M Cdn (for out of country for 7 patients), the potential cost savings based on 30 patients with refractory erythrodermic CTCL is about $3.8 M Cdn (annual).
For refractory cGvHD, the overall GRADE and strength of the recommendation is “weak” – the quality of the evidence is “low” (uncertainties due to methodological limitations in the study design in terms of study quality and directness), and the corresponding risk/uncertainty is increased due to a budget impact of approximately $1.5M Cdn while the cost-effectiveness of ECP is unknown and difficult to estimate considering that there are no high quality studies of effectiveness. Both the device and sterile solution are not licensed by Health Canada for the treatment of cGvHD.
If all the ECP procedures for patients with refractory erythrodermic CTCL and refractory cGvHD were performed in Ontario, the annual budget impact would be approximately $3M Cdn.
Overall GRADE and Strength of Recommendation (Including Uncertainty)
PMCID: PMC3379535  PMID: 23074497
6.  Importance of extensive staging in patients with mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT)-type lymphoma 
British Journal of Cancer  2000;83(4):454-457.
Lymphoma of the mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) type usually arises in MALT acquired through chronic antigenic stimulation triggered by persistent infection and/or autoimmune processes. Due to specific ligand–receptor interactions between lymphoid cells and high-endothelial venules of MALT, both normal and neoplastic lymphoid cells display a pronounced homing tendency to MALT throughout the body. In the case of neoplastic disease these homing properties may be responsible for lymphoma dissemination among various MALT-sites. According to this concept, we have standardized staging procedures in all patients diagnosed with MALT-type lymphoma. All patients with MALT-type lymphoma underwent standardized staging procedures before treatment. Staging included ophthalmologic examination, otolaryngologic investigation, gastroscopy with multiple biopsies, endosonography of the upper gastrointestinal tract, enteroclysis, colonoscopy, computed tomography of thorax and abdomen and bone marrow biopsy. Biopsy was performed in all lesions suggestive for lymphomatous involvement, and evaluation of all biopsy specimens was performed by a reference pathologist. 35 consecutive patients with histologically verified MALT-type lymphoma were admitted to our department. Twenty-four patients (68%) had primary involvement of the stomach, five (15%) had lymphoma of the ocular adnexa, three (8.5%) had lymphoma of the parotid, and three (8,5%) of the lung. Lymph-node involvement corresponding to stage EII disease was found in 13 patients (37%), only one patient with primary gastric lymphoma had local and supradiaphragmatic lymph-node involvement (stage EIII). Bone marrow biopsies were negative in all patients. Overall, eight of 35 patients (23%) had simultaneous biopsy-proven involvement of two MALT-sites: one patient each had lymphoma of parotid and lacrimal gland, conjunctiva and hypopharynx, conjunctiva and skin, lacrimal gland and lung, stomach and colon, and stomach and lung. The remaining two patients had bilateral parotideal lymphoma. Staging work-up was negative for lymph-node involvement in all of these eight patients. The importance of extensive staging in MALT-type lymphoma is emphasized by the demonstration of multiorgan involvement in almost a quarter of patients. In addition, our data suggest that extra-gastrointestinal MALT-type lymphoma more frequently occurs simultaneously at different anatomic sites than MALT-type lymphoma involving the GI-tract. © 2000 Cancer Research Campaign
doi:10.1054/bjoc.2000.1308
PMCID: PMC2374656  PMID: 10945490
MALT-type lymphoma; multifocal involvement; staging
7.  Extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type extensively involving the bone marrow 
Extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type, is an aggressive EBV-associated lymphoma that mainly involves the nasal cavity but has also been reported to involve other extranodal sites without nasal involvement. In contrast to aggressive NK cell leukemia (a marrow-based aggressive leukemia of NK-cell origin); extensive bone marrow and blood involvement is extremely uncommon by nasal type NK/T lymphoma. We report a patient with extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type that developed extensive bone marrow involvement during the course of her disease with some overlapping features with aggressive NK-cell leukemia.
PMCID: PMC3209612  PMID: 22076172
Nasal NK cell lymphoma; aggressive NK cell leukemia; bone marrow
8.  HIV Patients Developing Primary CNS Lymphoma Lack EBV-Specific CD4+ T Cell Function Irrespective of Absolute CD4+ T Cell Counts 
PLoS Medicine  2007;4(3):e96.
Background
In chronic HIV infection, antiretroviral therapy–induced normalization of CD4+ T cell counts (immune reconstitution [IR]) is associated with a decreased incidence of opportunistic diseases. However, some individuals remain at risk for opportunistic diseases despite prolonged normalization of CD4+ T cell counts. Deficient Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-specific CD4+ T cell function may explain the occurrence of EBV-associated opportunistic malignancy—such as primary central nervous system (PCNS) lymphoma—despite recovery of absolute CD4+ T cell counts.
Methods and Findings
Absolute CD4+ T cell counts and EBV-specific CD4+ T cell-dependent interferon-γ production were assessed in six HIV-positive individuals prior to development of PCNS lymphoma (“cases”), and these values were compared with those in 16 HIV-infected matched participants with no sign of EBV-associated pathology (“matched controls”) and 11 nonmatched HIV-negative blood donors. Half of the PCNS lymphoma patients fulfilled IR criteria (defined here as CD4+ T cell counts ≥500/μl blood). EBV-specific CD4+ T cells were assessed 0.5–4.7 y prior to diagnosis of lymphoma. In 0/6 cases versus 13/16 matched controls an EBV-specific CD4+ T cell response was detected (p = 0.007; confidence interval for odds ratio [0–0.40]). PCNS lymphoma patients also differed with regards to this response significantly from HIV-negative blood donors (p < 0.001, confidence interval for odds ratio [0–0.14]), but there was no evidence for a difference between HIV-negative participants and the HIV-positive matched controls (p = 0.47).
Conclusions
Irrespective of absolute CD4+ T cell counts, HIV-positive patients who subsequently developed PCNS lymphoma lacked EBV-specific CD4+ T cell function. Larger, ideally prospective studies are needed to confirm these preliminary data, and clarify the impact of pathogen-specific versus surrogate marker-based assessment of IR on clinical outcome.
In a case-control study from the Swiss HIV cohort, Hess and colleagues report that T-helper responses against Epstein-Barr virus are specifically absent in patients developing CNS lymphoma.
Editors' Summary
Background.
AIDS causes disease by inactivating the body's immune responses. Most severely affected are the white blood cells known as T lymphocytes, particularly the CD4+ T cells that recognize infection and enable other cells of the immune system to respond. Advanced HIV infection, marked by very low numbers of CD4+ cells, is associated with a variety of infections and tumors that are rarely seen in people with intact immune systems. People with advanced HIV who receive highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART) tend to have increases in their CD4+ cell counts and lose their susceptibility to these so-called opportunistic infections and cancers. For several common opportunistic infections, it is considered safe to discontinue preventive antibiotics after a patient's total CD4+ cell count has returned to normal levels on HAART. Some treated individuals, however, will develop these conditions even after their CD4+ cell counts have returned to normal levels. The reason this happens is unclear.
Why Was This Study Done?
For several years, scientists have speculated that susceptibility to a given opportunistic infection might be due not simply to low total CD4+ cells, but to loss of the specific CD4+ cells that recognize the infection in question. If this theory is correct, then those individuals who develop an opportunistic condition after their total CD4+ cell counts return to normal might be missing the specific cells that respond to the microbe causing the condition. The researchers wanted to test this theory in HIV patients with a brain tumor called primary central nervous system lymphoma (PCNS lymphoma). The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), which causes mononucleosis in the general population, has been shown to be a cause of PCNS lymphoma in people with AIDS.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers studied patients who developed PCNS lymphoma while enrolled in the Swiss HIV Cohort, an ongoing study that has enrolled more than 14,000 people. A large cohort was needed to address this question because PCNS lymphoma is uncommon, and indeed only six patients with a confirmed diagnosis were identified. Because they had been followed as part of the cohort study, these patients had given blood samples that could be tested in retrospect. Three of these patients had low CD4+ cell counts prior to lymphoma diagnosis and three had normal CD4+ cell counts, but CD4 responses specifically against EBV were absent or very low in all six patients before they were diagnosed with PCNS lymphoma. The researchers also studied a comparison group of cohort participants with comparable CD4+ cell counts but no PCNS lymphoma, and found that 13/16 of those participants did have CD4 responses to EBV.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These results support the idea that the action of EBV-specific CD4+ cells, rather than a given level of total CD4+ cells, is needed to prevent PCNS lymphoma. Because only a small number of cases were identified, this must be considered a preliminary result. Given the rarity of PCNS lymphoma, however, especially in people receiving HAART, it seems unlikely that a larger cohort will be available in the near future to provide a more definitive conclusion. Based on this result, it may be useful to perform similar studies of other opportunistic infections. If a “gap” in the CD4+ cell response can be shown to increase the risk of a specific condition, it may become appropriate to test specific CD4 responses before deciding to discontinue preventive treatment as CD4+ cell counts increase on HAART.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0040096.
Read the accompanying Perspective by Mark Jacobson, MD
The Swiss Cohort Study Web site contains information on related research projects
The UCSF Center for HIV Information's HIV InSite includes resources on HIV immunology and opportunistic infections
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0040096
PMCID: PMC1831733  PMID: 17388662
9.  Epstein Barr virus DNA analysis in blood predicts disease progression in a rare case of plasmablastic lymphoma with effusion 
Background
In HIV-1-infected patients a long lasting CD4+ cell decline influences the host-EBV balance and thereby increases the risk for EBV related malignancies. In spite of a world-wide access to combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) there are still a considerable number of HIV-1-infected patients who will develop severe immunodeficiency. These undiagnosed HIV-1 infected patients, so called late testers, demonstrate an increased lymphoma risk, compared to patients diagnosed early. Consecutive individual screening for EBV DNA-load in late testers might be a useful predictor of emerging EBV-malignancy.
Methods
Patient biopsies and ascites were analyzed morphologically, by immuncyto-histochemistry and in-situ hybridization. Viral DNA and RNA load were quantified by PCR. Cell lines from primary tumor and from ascites, were established in vitro and further analyzed.
Result
We here report on a case of EBV-positive lymphoma in an AIDS patient, first presenting with pleural effusion and ascites and was thus initially considered a primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) but was later diagnosed as a plasmablastic lymphoma (PBL). The patient had responded to cART with undetectable HIV-RNA and increased CD4 cell count one year prior to lymphoma presentation. At the time of lymphoma diagnosis the HIV-RNA values were <50 RNA-copies per mL blood (undetectable) and the CD4-positive cell count 170 ×106/L. The lymphoma was CD45-negative and weakly CD22- and CD30-positive. The patient had a history of Kaposi sarcoma and HHV-8 seropositivity. The lymphoma biopsies, and three cell lines derived on different occasions from the tumor cell effusion, were all EBV-positive but HHV-8 negative.
A noticeable EBV-DNA load decline was observed during the remission of the lymphoma following CHOP-therapy. The EBV-DNA load increased dramatically at the time of recurrence.
Conclusion
EBV DNA load might be useful in monitoring the effect of lymphoma treatment as well as in estimating the risk of EBV-associated lymphoma in HIV-1 infected patients with pronounced immunosuppression.
doi:10.1186/1750-9378-8-28
PMCID: PMC3726497  PMID: 23880011
EBV; HIV-1; HHV-8; DNA load; Plasmablastic lymphoma
10.  EBV in situ hybridization study for non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. 
Epstein-Barr virus(EBV) has been implicated in the pathogenesis of B-lymphoproliferative disorders, T-cell lymphomas and Hodgkin's disease. In this report, we performed an in situ hybridization study on EBV genome in 10 cases of nasal non-Hodgkin's lymphoma(NHL), 20 cases of Waldeyer's ring(WR) NHL, and 20 cases of nodal NHLs to document EBV association with lymphomas in Koreans. For immunophenotyping, monoclonal antibodies for CD 20, MB 2, CD 45Ro & CD 43 were used. For in situ hybridization study, EBV DNA probe for Bam HI 'V' fragment and EBV RNA probe for EBER and BHLF were used. Twenty two cases(44%) of malignant lymphomas were positive for EBV genome. Generally, T-cell lymphomas showed a higher positive rate(61%) than B-cell lymphomas(24%). Among T-cell lymphomas, nasal lymphomas showed a higher positive rate(80%) than WR(50%) or nodal lymphomas(50%). Of 22 EBV genome positive cases, 10 cases were positive for EBER, 10 cases for BHLF, and 2 cases for both EBER and BHLF. The histologic types by Working Formulation(WF) were not correlated with EBV genome positive rate, whereas lymphomas showing the histologic spectrum of polymorphic reticulosis(PR) showed a higher positive rate(65%) than lymphomas without PR-like features(40%). These results indicate that nasal T-cell lymphomas with the histologic spectrum of PR are strongly associated with EBV and that the anatomic site may be an important factor in this association.
PMCID: PMC3054072  PMID: 7993589
11.  Characteristics of Epstein-Barr virus-associated gastric cancer: A study of 235 cases at a comprehensive cancer center in U.S.A 
Background
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) has been shown to be associated with gastric cancer. However, inconsistent findings have been reported regarding the distribution of EBV infected cells (in normal gastric epithelium vs. intestinal metaplastic cells vs. in neoplastic cells) and the characteristics of EBV-associated gastric cancer. Lymph node positive EBV-associated gastric cancer has not been systematically studied. The aims of this study were to evaluate EBV-associated gastric cancer, to assess the distribution of EBV infected cells including all positive lymph nodes, and to define the characteristics of EBV-associated gastric cancer.
Design
The study included primary gastric cancer patients who underwent surgical resection with no preoperative treatment at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center between 1987 and 2006. Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue from these resection specimens were assessed for EBV by in situ hybridization, the gold standard for EBV detection in tissue. EBV status was analyzed along with clinicopathologic parameters including age, gender, tumor type, lymph node status, and pathologic stage of the tumor.
Results
Among 235 patients, 12 had intranuclear expression of EBV. EBV staining was seen only in tumor cells and no detectable EBV was observed in normal gastric mucosa, intestinal metaplasia or stromal cells. Eight of 12 patients with EBV-associated gastric cancer had regional lymph node metastasis. Of note, metastatic tumor cells in all of the involved lymph nodes of these 8 cases contained EBV. The epidemiologic data showed 11 of the 12 patients with EBV-associated gastric cancer were men, ranging in age from 54 to 78 years (mean age, 60 years; median age, 62.1 years). The age distribution for non-EBV associated gastric cancer patients ranged from 21 to 93 years (mean age, 67 years; median age, 66.4 years).
Conclusion
Our study demonstrated that EBV is present exclusively in gastric cancer cells. The detection of EBV in tumor cells in all of the lymph nodes involved with metastatic gastric carcinoma suggests simultaneous replication of EBV and tumor cells. The predominantly male gender and relatively younger age observed for the EBV-infected gastric cancer cases suggest an association between this disease and other factors, such as life style.
doi:10.1186/1756-9966-28-14
PMCID: PMC2642773  PMID: 19192297
12.  A Case of Age-Related Epstein–Barr Virus (EBV)-Associated B Cell Lymphoproliferative Disorder, so-called Polymorphous Subtype, of the Mandible, with a Review of the Literature 
Head and Neck Pathology  2012;7(2):178-187.
Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) is known to be associated with the development of lymphomas in immunocompromised patients. Recently, age-related immune impairment has been recognized as a predisposing factor in the development of EBV-driven lymphoproliferative disorders (LPDs) in elderly patients without any known immunodeficiency or prior lymphoma. In approximately 70 % of reported cases, the affected sites have been extranodal, such as the skin, lung, tonsil and stomach. However, age-related EBV-associated B cell (EBV + B cell) LPD is extremely rare in the oral cavity. Here we report a 71-year-old Japanese man who developed an EBV + B cell LPD resembling classical Hodgkin lymphoma (CHL)—so-called polymorphous subtype—of the mandible. Histopathologically, infiltration of large atypical lymphoid cells including Hodgkin or Reed-Sternberg-like cells into granulation tissue with marked necrosis was found in the mandibular bone. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that the large atypical Hodgkin or Reed-Sternberg-like cells were CD3–, CD15–, CD20+, CD30+ and Epstein–Barr virus (EBV)-latent infection membrane protein-1 (LMP-1)+. In situ hybridization (ISH) demonstrated EBV-encoded small RNA (EBER) + in numerous Hodgkin or Reed-Sternberg-like cells. EBNA-2 was detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using an extract from the formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimen. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of the polymorphous subtype of age-related EBV + B cell LPD affecting the mandible.
doi:10.1007/s12105-012-0392-1
PMCID: PMC3642255  PMID: 22869357
Age-related Epstein–Barr virus (EBV)-associated B cell lymphoproliferative disorder (age-related EBV + B cell LPD); Epstein–Barr virus (EBV); Polymorphous subtype; Mandible
13.  The Role of Bone Marrow Aspirate and Trephine Samples in Haematological Diagnoses in Patients Referred to a Teaching Hospital in Ghana 
Ghana Medical Journal  2013;47(2):74-78.
Summary
Introduction and methods
A bone marrow examination had been requested by the referring clinician in over half of the 250 patients referred to the haematology clinic at Konfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) between 1988 and 1998 for investigations for various haematological disorders. Although a full blood count and a peripheral blood film can go a long way to resolve some of these diagnostic challenges faced by doctors in the districts, this information was generally not provided in the referral letter. After careful selection, 80 patients actually underwent a bone marrow examination. The result of the full blood count and peripheral film were available before bone marrow sampling was done.
Results
Lymphoproliferative disorders were the most common diseases that caused infiltration of the bone marrow. 27.5% of lymphomas were diagnosed on morphological examination of the bone marrow as high grade B cell NHL, 13.75% had tropical splenic lymphoma, 10% had chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) and 5% had disseminated high grade T cell lymphoma and 2.5% had Adult T cell Leukaemia Lymphoma (ATLL). Other disorders diagnosed after bone marrow examination include myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), aplastic anaemia, megaloblastic anaemia and myelofibrosis. Only 8.75% of these patients had a normal bone marrow.
Conclusions
This study has demonstrated the complexity of using bone marrow examination in clinical diagnosis and emphasizes the need for referring clinicians to consider involving specialist input in difficult haematological cases before requesting bone marrow examination for their patients.
PMCID: PMC3743116  PMID: 23966743
Bone marrow aspirate; trephine biopsy; haematological diagnoses; Kumasi
14.  Nasal natural killer/T‐cell lymphoma and its association with type “i”/XhoI loss strain Epstein–Barr virus in Chile 
Journal of Clinical Pathology  2006;60(6):656-660.
Background
Nasal T/natural killer (NK)‐cell lymphoma is an aggressive type of non‐Hodking's lymphoma associated with Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) and striking geographical variations worldwide.
Aim
To characterise nasal NK/T‐cell lymphoma associated with genotypes of EBV in Chile, a Latin American country, where multiple strains of EBV, including two new recombinant strains, in healthy individuals were recently found.
Methods
Cases with diagnosis of primary nasal lymphoma were selected for histological and immunohistochemical analysis (CD3, CD3e, CD4, CD8, CD79a, CD56, CD57 and TIA‐1) and in‐situ hybridisation, serology and genotyping analysis for EBV.
Results
Out of 22 cases, 9 (41%) cases fulfilled the World Health Organization criteria for nasal NK/T‐cell lymphoma; of these 7 (78%) cases were positive for EBV. Genotyping analysis revealed 6 cases of type 1 EBV and wildtype F at the BamHI‐F region, 4 cases type “i” EBV at the BamHI‐W1/I1 region; XhoI wild type was found in 2 and XhoI loss in 4 cases, respectively. Cosegregation analysis of the BamHI‐W1/I1 region and XhoI restriction site showed the new recombinant strain type “i”/XhoI loss in 3 cases and type “i”/XhoI wild‐type strain in 1 case. Most patients were treated with combined anthracycline‐containing regimens. Half of the cases attained complete remission.
Conclusion
Although nasal NK/T‐cell lymphomas from Chile share similar clinicopathological features, high association with EBV and unfavourable prognosis with those described elsewhere, genotype analysis shows that the new recombinant type “i”/XhoI loss strain might contribute to explain the intermediate incidence of nasal NK/T‐cell lymphomas in Latin America.
doi:10.1136/jcp.2005.034199
PMCID: PMC1955082  PMID: 16775124
15.  Terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase distribution in neoplastic and hematopoietic cells. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1977;59(5):889-899.
In the present study, terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase was examined in the peripheral blood and (or) bone marrow of 115 children with a variety of neoplastic, hematologic, and other unrelated disorders. Terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase activity was present at 4.08+/-0.74 U/108 cells in 23 morphologicall normal bone marrow samples from childhood controls. Terminal transferase was present at greater than 23 U/108 nucleated cells and at greater than31 U/108 blasts in the bone marrow of all children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia studied at initial diagnosis and at disease relapse. Terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase was detectable at low levels, less than 7.5 U/108 cells, in all remission marrow smaples. Bone marrow terminal transferase activity was markedly elevated in all untreated acute lymphoblastic leukemia patients, whereas low levels which were difficult to interpret were present in the peripheral blood samples of two patients at diagnosis and six patients at relapse who had low absolute lymphoblast counts. Because of greater variation in the lymphoblast content of peripheral blood, bone marrow assays are more reliable in detecting disease activity. Marrow terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase values obtained during the active phase of acute lymphoblastic leukemia were significantly greater than those found in other types of leukemia, bone marrow malignancies, and hematologic disorders. Terminal transferase determinations in blast cells of two patients with leukemic conversion of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and in tumor cells from one patient with Burkitt's lymphoma were within the control range. These dat further define the usefulness of terminal deoxynucleotidyltrnasferase assay in the differentiation and classication of hematologic malignancies.
PMCID: PMC372297  PMID: 265945
16.  Correlations of hematological parameters with bone marrow findings in chronic lymphoproliferative disorders associated with hepatitis viruses 
Journal of Medicine and Life  2013;6(4):464-471.
Abstract
Background. Hepatitis B and C viruses’ infections are often associated with hematological disorders in evolution, suggesting that these viruses have a tropism for peripheral blood and/or bone marrow cells.
Aim. To analyze the hematological parameters and bone marrow findings in a group of patients diagnosed with chronic lymphoproliferative disorders (CLD) and hepatitis viruses B, C, D infections, which were included in the research grant (acronym LIMFO-VIR) between December 2007 and May 2010 in the Hematology Department of the Emergency University Hospital of Bucharest.
Methods and results. Patients were diagnosed by using immunopathology according to the WHO criteria. The analyzed group included 42 patients (both sexes), with the mean age of 60,35 years. The most frequent hematologic disease was non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma 30/42 (71,42%), followed by chronic lymphocytic leukemia (16,66%) and Hodgkin’s lymphoma (7,14%). Hepatitis viruses were distributed: 17/42 (40,47%) patients with HBV, 22/42 (52,38%) with HCV and 3/42 (7,14%) had a double/triple association of viruses. Most of the patients had an indolent type of disease - 27/42 (64,28%), whereas 15/42 (35,71%) had an aggressive one, pattern found both in the HBV and HCV infected groups. An abnormal bone marrow result was revealed in 32/42 (76,19%) patients, 19 (59,37%) of them being HCV infected. Myelodysplasia was found in 6/42(14,28%) patients, the majority being HCV infected, all having an indolent form of CLD. The antiviral therapy did not influence the hematological parameters (no significant differences were found between the groups with/without an antiviral therapy).
Discussions. Patients with hepatitis virus infections may associate neutropenia and thrombocytopenia; the mechanisms are thought to involve hypersplenism, autoimmune processes and antiviral therapy. We excluded the influence of chemotherapy, as the study was performed before the treatment. In our group, patients whether HBV or HCV infected, presented an isolated cytopenia. The abnormal bone marrow cellularity (increased or decreased) and dysplasia were found especially in the HCV group. There are studies showing no association between myelodysplasia and hepatitis viruses; others found a strong relation of these. One of the mechanisms of myelodysplasia could be a dysregulation of the immune system.
Conclusions. Bone marrow/peripheral blood features correlate with the type of viral infection and HCV is more prone to develop additional hematological changes than HBV. The degree of bone marrow involvement by CLDs influences these features. We considered mandatory to perform a bone marrow analysis at the diagnosis of CLDs to stage and to establish if other bone marrow changes were present, a crucial aspect for therapy and outcome of the disease. The association between the hepatitis viruses – myelodysplasia- autoimmunity seems to have a role in the lymphoproliferative disorders etiology.
Abbreviations: CLD – chronic lymphoproliferative disorders; NHL- non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, CLL- chronic lymphocytic leukemia, HL- Hodgkin’s lymphoma, MDS – myelodysplastic syndrome, AML – acute myeloid leukemia
PMCID: PMC4034312  PMID: 24868264
hepatitis viruses; chronic lymphoproliferative disorders; myelodysplasia; cytopenia
17.  CD20-positive NK/T-cell lymphoma with indolent clinical course: report of case and review of literature 
Diagnostic Pathology  2012;7:133.
Abstract
CD20-positive T-cell lymphoma is extremely rare and only two cases of CD20-positive NK/T-cell lymphoma with aggressive clinical courses have been described in the literature. We present a case of unusual NK/T-cell lymphoma with CD20 expression in nasal cavity occurring in an elder female patient. The patient had presented with left nasal cavity nodule for 10 years. CT scan revealed a mass was located at the left anterior nasal cavity and was observed to extend into the ethmoid sinus. There was no regional lymph node involvement. Biopsy was performed and microscopical inspection revealed the lesion was composed of small- to middle-size atypical lymphoid cell, histiocytes, eosinophils, and neutrophils. The lymphoid cells were strongly immunoreactive to CD3, CD20, CD56, TIA-1 and granzyme-B. The Epstein-Barr virus genomes were also found in tumor cells by in situ hybridization. By genetic analysis, however, no clonal rearrangement of the T cell receptor-γ genes (TCRG), or the immunoglobulin heavy chain (IgH) gene was found. A diagnosis of CD20-positive extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type was made. The patient refused chemotherapy, and had been only on regular follow-up for 6 months. There was no sign of enlargement of tumor and extra-nasal dissemination by whole body positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) study. The accurate diagnosis of NK/T-cell lymphoma with CD20 expression is important, but the indolent behavior of the present case is more unusual. A long-term follow-up is suggested to be performed to inspect the progression for this tumor.
Virtual slides
The virtual slides for this article can be found here: http://www.diagnosticpathology.diagnomx.eu/vs/1320848277788495
doi:10.1186/1746-1596-7-133
PMCID: PMC3502398  PMID: 23031227
NK/T cell lymphoma; Nasal type; CD20 expression; Differential diagnosis; Prognosis
18.  Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) molecular signature in conjunctival mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma 
Histology and histopathology  2004;19(4):1219-1226.
Summary
Conjunctival mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma is an extranodal marginal zone B-cell lymphoma that is characterized by an exaggerated clonal expansion of B cells, which implicate a pathological proliferative response to antigen(s) including bacteria. Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection is recognized as one of the causative agents of gastric MALT lymphoma; however, it has not been reported in extra gastric MALT lymphoma. We studied 5 patients (4 adults and 1 child) with salmon-colored conjunctival lesions. One patient also had a history of abnormal bone marrow biopsy a year earlier with lymphoid aggregates involving 5% of the overall bone marrow. The conjunctival lesions of the 5 patients were biopsied. Histopathological diagnoses were consistent with conjunctival MALT lymphoma. Lymphoma and normal conjunctival cells were microdissected using laser capture microscopy or manual techniques. DNA was extracted and subjected to PCR amplification using H. pylori gene-specific primers from the urease B and vac/m2 gene. Cells from chronic conjunctivitis (normal lymphocytes), conjunctival human T-cell lymphotropic virus type-1/adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (HTLV-1/ATL), and orbital B-cell lymphoma were also microdissected, processed and analyzed. PCR amplification and Southern blot hybridization demonstrated H. pylori DNA in the conjunctival MALT lymphoma cells of 4/5 cases. The negative case was the one with a history of abnormal bone marrow. In contrast, H. pylori gene was not detected in normal conjunctival cells from the cases of MALT lymphoma or the lymphocytes, ATL and orbital B-lymphoma cells from the controls. These data suggest that H. pylori may play a role in conjunctival MALT lymphoma.
PMCID: PMC1971129  PMID: 15375765
Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma; Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori); Conjunctiva; microdissection; PCR
19.  Tanzanian malignant lymphomas: WHO classification, presentation, ploidy, proliferation and HIV/EBV association 
BMC Cancer  2010;10:344.
Background
In Tanzania, the International Working Formulation [WF] rather than the WHO Classification is still being used in diagnosing malignant lymphomas (ML) and the biological characterization including the HIV/EBV association is sketchy, thus restraining comparison, prognostication and application of established therapeutic protocols.
Methods
Archival, diagnostic ML biopsies (N = 336), available sera (N = 35) screened by ELISA for HIV antibodies and corresponding clinical/histological reports at Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) in Tanzania between 1996 and 2006 were retrieved and evaluated. A fraction (N = 174) were analyzed by histopathology and immunohistochemistry (IHC). Selected biopsies were characterized by flow-cytometry (FC) for DNA ploidy (N = 60) and some by in-situ hybridization (ISH) for EBV-encoded RNA (EBER, N = 37).
Results
A third (38.8%, 109/281) of the ML patients with available clinical information had extranodal disease presentation. A total of 158 out of 174 biopsies selected for immunophenotyping were confirmed to be ML which were mostly (84. 8%, 134/158) non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Most (83.6%, 112/134) of NHL were B-cell lymphomas (BCL) (CD20+), of which 50.9%, (57/112) were diffuse large B-cell (DLBCL). Out of the 158 confirmed MLs, 22 (13.9%) were T-cell [CD3+] lymphomas (TCL) and 24 (15.2%) were Hodgkin lymphomas (HL) [CD30+]. Furthermore, out of the 60 FC analyzed ML cases, 27 (M:F ratio 2:1) were DLBCL, a slight majority (55.6%, 15/27) with activated B-cell like (ABC) and 45% (12/27) with germinal center B-cell like (GCB) immunophenotype. Overall, 40% (24/60) ML were aneuploid mostly (63.0%, 17/27) the DLBCL and TCL (54.5%, 6/11). DNA index (DI) of FC-analyzed ML ranged from 1.103-2.407 (median = 1.51) and most (75.0%) aneuploid cases showed high (>40%) cell proliferation by Ki-67 reactivity. The majority (51.4%, 19/37) of EBER ISH analyzed lymphoma biopsies were positive. Of the serologically tested MLs, 40.0% (14/35) were HIV positive, mostly with high (≥40.0%) Ki-67 reactivity.
Conclusions
According to the 2001 WHO Classification, most subtypes are represented in Tanzanian ML. Extranodal presentation was common among MNH lymphoma patients who also showed high aneuploidy, tumor proliferation (KI-67) and EBER positivity. DLBCL was frequent and phenotype heterogeneity appeared similar to observations in Western countries suggesting applicability of established intervention approaches. HIV was apparently associated with high ML cell proliferation but extended studies are needed to clarify this.
doi:10.1186/1471-2407-10-344
PMCID: PMC2909982  PMID: 20591198
20.  Precursor T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia presenting with bone marrow necrosis: a case report 
Introduction
Bone marrow necrosis is a clinicopathological condition diagnosed most often at postmortem examination, but it is also seen during the course of malignancy and is not always associated with a poor prognosis. The morphological features of bone marrow necrosis are disruption of the normal marrow architecture and necrosis of myeloid tissue and medullary stroma. Non-malignant conditions associated with bone marrow necrosis are sickle cell anemia, infections, drugs (sulfasalazine, interferon α, all-trans retinoic acid, granulocyte colony-stimulating factor and fludarabine), disseminated intravascular coagulation, antiphospholipid antibody syndrome and acute graft versus host diseases. The malignant causes are leukemia, lymphoma and metastatic carcinomas. Herein we report the case of a patient with precursor T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia and bone marrow necrosis at initial presentation.
Case presentation
A 10-year-old Kurdish boy was presented with generalized bone pain and fever of 1 month’s duration which was associated with sweating, easy fatigability, nose bleeding, breathlessness and severe weight loss. On examination, we observed pallor, tachypnea, tachycardia, low blood pressure, fever, petechial hemorrhage, ecchymoses, tortuous dilated veins over the chest and upper part of abdomen, multiple small cervical lymph node enlargements, mildly enlarged spleen, palpable liver and gross abdominal distention. Blood analysis revealed pancytopenia and elevated lactate dehydrogenase and erythrocyte sedimentation rate. Imaging results showed mediastinal widening on a planar chest X-ray and diffuse focal infiltration of the axial bone marrow on magnetic resonance imaging of the lumbosacral vertebrae. Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy examination showed extensive bone marrow necrosis. Immunophenotyping analysis of the bone marrow biopsy confirmed T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, as CD3 and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase markers were positive and CD10, CD20 and CD79a markers were negative.
Conclusion
The aggressive initial clinical presentation of our patient with huge mediastinal widening, development of superior vein cava syndrome and extensive bone marrow necrosis as initial signs made the diagnosis of the case difficult. The necrotic hematopoietic cells gave inconclusive results on the initial immunohistochemistry tests. The prognosis of bone marrow necrosis is better secondary to acute lymphoblastic leukemia in the pediatric age group compared with adults and those with underlying solid tumors. Despite the aggressive behavior at initial presentation, the patient responded to chemotherapy and necrosis disappeared at day 28 after the start of the therapeutic regimen.
doi:10.1186/1752-1947-6-349
PMCID: PMC3492084  PMID: 23057758
Bone marrow necrosis; Acute lymphoblastic leukemia; Bone marrow aspiration
21.  Specificity of IRF4 Translocations for Primary Cutaneous Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma: a Multicenter Study of 204 Skin Biopsies 
Current pathologic criteria cannot reliably distinguish cutaneous anaplastic large cell lymphoma from other CD30-positive T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders (lymphomatoid papulosis, systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma with skin involvement, and transformed mycosis fungoides). We previously reported IRF4 (interferon regulatory factor-4) translocations in cutaneous anaplastic large cell lymphomas. Here, we investigated the clinical utility of detecting IRF4 translocations in skin biopsies. We performed fluorescence in situ hybridization for IRF4 in 204 biopsies involved by T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders from 182 patients at three institutions. Nine of forty-five (20%) cutaneous anaplastic large cell lymphomas and 1 of 32 (3%) cases of lymphomatoid papulosis with informative results demonstrated an IRF4 translocation. Remaining informative cases were negative for a translocation (7 systemic anaplastic large cell lymphomas; 44 cases of mycosis fungoides/Sézary syndrome (13 transformed); 24 peripheral T-cell lymphomas, not otherwise specified; 12 CD4-positive small/medium-sized pleomorphic T-cell lymphomas; 5 extranodal NK/T-cell lymphomas, nasal type; 4 gamma-delta T-cell lymphomas; and 5 other uncommon T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders). Among all cutaneous T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders, fluorescence in situ hybridization for IRF4 had a specificity and positive predictive value for cutaneous anaplastic large cell lymphoma of 99% and 90%, respectively (p=0.00002, Fisher’s exact test). Among anaplastic large cell lymphomas, lymphomatoid papulosis, and transformed mycosis fungoides, specificity and positive predictive value were 98% and 90%, respectively (p=0.005). Fluorescence in situ hybridization abnormalities other than translocations and IRF4 protein expression were seen in 13% and 65% of cases, respectively, but were non-specific with regard to T-cell lymphoproliferative disorder subtype. Our findings support the clinical utility of fluorescence in situ hybridization for IRF4 in the differential diagnosis of T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders in skin biopsies, with detection of a translocation favoring cutaneous anaplastic large cell lymphoma. Like all fluorescence in situ hybridization studies, IRF4 testing must be interpreted in the context of morphology, phenotype, and clinical features.
doi:10.1038/modpathol.2010.225
PMCID: PMC3122134  PMID: 21169992
IRF4; MUM1; anaplastic large cell lymphoma; lymphomatoid papulosis; mycosis fungoides; T-cell lymphoma; translocation; fluorescence in situ hybridization
22.  Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Display Anti-Cancer Activity in SCID Mice Bearing Disseminated Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Xenografts 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(6):e11140.
Background
Although multimodality treatment can induce high rate of remission in many subtypes of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL), significant proportions of patients relapse with incurable disease. The effect of human bone marrow (BM) mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) on tumor cell growth is controversial, and no specific information is available on the effect of BM-MSC on NHL.
Methodology/Principal Findings
The effect of BM-MSC was analyzed in two in vivo models of disseminated non-Hodgkin's lymphomas with an indolent (EBV− Burkitt-type BJAB, median survival = 46 days) and an aggressive (EBV+ B lymphoblastoid SKW6.4, median survival = 27 days) behavior in nude-SCID mice. Intra-peritoneal (i.p.) injection of MSC (4 days after i.p. injection of lymphoma cells) significantly increased the overall survival at an optimal MSC∶lymphoma ratio of 1∶10 in both xenograft models (BJAB+MSC, median survival = 58.5 days; SKW6.4+MSC, median survival = 40 days). Upon MSC injection, i.p. tumor masses developed more slowly and, at the histopathological observation, exhibited a massive stromal infiltration coupled to extensive intra-tumor necrosis. In in vitro experiments, we found that: i) MSC/lymphoma co-cultures modestly affected lymphoma cell survival and were characterized by increased release of pro-angiogenic cytokines with respect to the MSC, or lymphoma, cultures; ii) MSC induce the migration of endothelial cells in transwell assays, but promoted endothelial cell apoptosis in direct MSC/endothelial cell co-cultures.
Conclusions/Significance
Our data demonstrate that BM-MSC exhibit anti-lymphoma activity in two distinct xenograft SCID mouse models of disseminated NHL.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0011140
PMCID: PMC2886845  PMID: 20585401
23.  Ocular involvement in nasal natural killer T-cell lymphoma 
International ophthalmology  2008;29(4):275-279.
Purpose
To describe the clinical, morphologic, and immunohistochemical features of a case of paranasal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma (NKTL) with ocular involvement.
Case report
In March 2005 the patient presented with a maxillary sinusitis and upper nasal obstruction. In July she underwent a nasal computed tomography (CT) scan and multiple biopsies of the granulomatous tissue in the nasal fossae. The diagnosis was NK/T non-Hodgkin's lymphoma nasal type, stage IV A. Afterwards she presented anterior uveitis. In September after the diagnosis of lymphoma the patient underwent a bone marrow biopsy and thoracic and abdominal CT scan. An ophthalmic examination including visual acuity assessment and fundoscopic examination was made. In October she started chemotherapy cycles. Maxillary CT scan and ophthalmic examinations were performed during the cycles. In January 2006 after severe recurrences of panuveitis a diagnostic vitrectomy was performed.
Results
A diagnosis of T-lymphoma cells in the vitreous was made; the tumor was most likely originating from her paranasal NKTL. The condition of the patient deteriorated rapidly and she expired on February 2006.
Conclusions
Nasal and paranasal sinus lymphomas are rare, but aggressive diseases with a tendency to invade tissues and spread to CNS, including the eye. Ocular manifestations prior to systemic ones may be useful to monitor the response to therapy.
doi:10.1007/s10792-008-9220-8
PMCID: PMC2714878  PMID: 18438613
Masquerade syndrome; Nasal type lymphoma; Natural killer T-cell lymphoma; Serous retinal detachment
24.  A probable identical Epstein-Barr virus clone-positive composite lymphoma with aggressive natural killer-cell leukemia and cytotoxic T-cell lymphoma 
The patient was a 52-year old woman with a history of mosquito-bite hypersensitivity since childhood. In July 2011, she developed pyrexia, headaches, and nausea, and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-positive aggressive natural killer leukemia (ANKL) was diagnosed on the basis of both a peripheral blood and bone marrow examination. An inguinal lymph node biopsy, on the other hand, revealed EBV-positive cytotoxic T-cell lymphoma plus the presence of a small number of EBV-positive ANKL cells, and a diagnosis of EBV-positive composite lymphoma was made. Both the cytotoxic T-cell lymphoma and ANKL exhibited EBV terminal repeat (Southern blot analysis) monoclonal patterns, and they were almost the same size, approximately 9.0 kb. If it was the identical EBV clone, it is possible that EBV infected progenitor cells common to both NK cells and T cells, that the progenitor cells then differentiated into NK cells and T cells, a chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection developed, and neoplastic transformation occurred. If it was not the identical EBV clone, fairly similar EBVs must have infected NK cells and T cells separately, and they then underwent neoplastic transformation. Because the mechanism by which EBV infects NK cells or T cells is still unknown, we concluded that this case is also important from the standpoint of elucidating it. We are currently in the process of conducting gene analyses to determine whether the fairly similar EBVs that infected the ANKL and cytotoxic T-cell lymphoma are the identical clone.
PMCID: PMC3885499  PMID: 24427365
Aggressive NK leukemia; Epstein-Barr virus; cytotoxic T-cell lymphoma; composite lymphoma; large granular lymphocytes
25.  An unusual case of systemic mastocytosis associated with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (SM‐CLL) 
Journal of Clinical Pathology  2006;59(3):264-268.
Aims
Whereas focal accumulations of reactive lymphocytes around mast cell (MC) infiltrates are often seen in indolent systemic mastocytosis (ISM) involving the bone marrow, an association of systemic mastocytosis (SM) with malignant lymphoma/lymphatic leukaemia is very rare. This report contributes to the differential diagnosis of ISM by demonstrating that such lymphocytic aggregates may be neoplastic.
Methods
Biopsy specimens (bone marrow and gastrointestinal mucosa) of a 69 year old woman with mild blood lymphocytosis and a history of urticaria pigmentosa‐like skin lesions that had disappeared a few years earlier, were investigated immunohistochemically using antibodies against CD3, CD5, CD20, CD23, CD25, CD34, CD117, chymase, and tryptase. Rearrangements of the IgH and TCRy genes were studied by seminested PCR. Mutation analysis of c‐kit was performed by melting point analysis of nested PCR using amplified DNA from pooled microdissected single cells (MC and B cells) of both sites.
Results
The histomorphological features of the bone marrow corresponded to that of ISM with multifocal accumulations of MC surrounded by clusters of lymphocytes of mature appearance. However, these lymphocytes revealed an aberrant immunophenotype with coexpression of CD5, CD20, and CD23, thus enabling the final diagnosis of SM with an associated clonal haematological non‐MC lineage disease, in particular SM with associated B cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (SM‐CLL). Monoclonality for both ISM and B‐CLL could be confirmed by demonstrating the typical activating c‐kit point mutation D816V in bone marrow MC, and a monoclonal IgH rearrangement in bone marrow B cells.
Conclusions
Usually, focal accumulations of lymphocytes around MC infiltrates in the bone marrow of patients with SM are reactive in nature (lymphocytosis). However, a low grade malignant lymphoma should also be included in the differential diagnosis. We describe here the first case, to our knowledge, with synchronous diagnosis of SM and associated B‐CLL. This diagnosis could only be established by application of appropriate immunohistochemical and molecular techniques, as the bone marrow histology on first investigation resembled that of typical ISM.
doi:10.1136/jcp.2005.026989
PMCID: PMC1860346  PMID: 16505276
mast cell; systemic mastocytosis; chronic lymphocytic leukaemia

Results 1-25 (1414991)