Although knowledge of the genetics of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) has been increasing, little is known about the characteristics and prognostic significance of cytogenetic abnormalities and the clinical utility of cytogenetic studies performed on bone marrow (BM) specimens. To investigate the significance of isolated cytogenetic aberrations in the absence of histologic BM involvement, we assessed the implication of cytogenetic staging and prognostic stratification by a retrospective multicenter analysis of newly diagnosed DLBCL patients.
We analyzed cytogenetic and clinical data from 1585 DLBCL patients whose BM aspirates had been subjected to conventional karyotyping for staging. If available, interphase fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) data were also collected from patients.
Histologic BM involvement were found in 259/1585 (16.3%) patients and chromosomal abnormalities were detected in 192 (12.1%) patients (54 patients with single abnormalities and 138 patients with 2 or more abnormalities). Isolated cytogenetic aberrations (2 or more abnormalities) without histologic involvement were found in 21 patients (1.3%). Two or more cytogenetic abnormalities were associated with inferior overall survival (OS) compared with a normal karyotype or single abnormality in both patients with histologic BM involvement (5-year OS, 16.5% vs. 52.7%; P < 0.001) and those without BM involvement (31.8% vs. 66.5%; P < 0.001). This result demonstrated that BM cytogenetic results have a significant prognostic impact that is independent of BM histology. The following abnormalities were most frequently observed: rearrangements involving 14q32, 19q13, 19p13, 1p, 3q27, and 8q24; del(6q); dup(1q); and trisomy 18. In univariate analysis, several specific abnormalities including abnormalities at 16q22-q24, 6p21-p25, 12q22-q24, and -17 were associated with poor prognosis. Multivariate analyses performed for patients who had either chromosomal abnormalities or histologic BM involvement, revealed IPI high risk, ≥ 2 cytogenetic abnormalities, and several specific chromosomal abnormalities, including abnormalities at 19p13, 12q22-q24, 8q24, and 19q13 were significantly associated with a worse prognosis.
We suggest that isolated cytogenetic aberrations can be regarded as BM involvement and cytogenetic evaluation of BM improves staging accuracy along with prognostic information for DLBCL patients.