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1.  Serum beta-2 microglobulin in malignant lymphomas: an old but powerful prognostic factor 
Blood research  2014;49(3):148-153.
Beta-2 microglobulin is synthesized in all nucleated cells and forms the light chain subunit of the major histocompatibility complex class I antigen. Despite its potential role as a convenient and non-invasive prognostic indicator in malignant lymphomas, the influence of serum β2 microglobulin is currently underestimated, and therapeutic decision making is rarely affected by this marker. Recent studies that included relatively large numbers of patients with specific histologic subtypes showed that serum β2 microglobulin is a potent prognostic marker in malignant lymphomas. In follicular lymphoma, this effort led to the incorporation of serum β2 microglobulin as an indicator in a new prognostic model. In this review, we summarize the current evidence supporting the role of serum β2 microglobulin as a prognostic factor in patients with malignant lymphoma and discuss perspectives for future investigations.
PMCID: PMC4188779  PMID: 25325033
Beta-2 microglobulin; Lymphoma; Prognostic factor
2.  Primary mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma: a single-center experience in Korea 
Blood research  2014;49(1):36-41.
Primary mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma (PMBL) is a distinct subtype of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, which has no consensus for its ideal treatment or prognosis.
We reviewed the clinicopathologic features and clinical outcomes of 25 PMBL cases diagnosed at a single institution between 1993 and 2009 and compared them with 588 cases of non-mediastinal, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL, control group) diagnosed during the same period.
Thirteen (52.0%) PMBL patients had Ann Arbor stage III or IV disease, and 10 (40.0%) had B symptoms. Thirteen (52%) PMBL patients were classified as high-intermediate/high-risk according to the International Prognostic Index. There was a significant prevalence of young (median: 31 years; range, 15-78 years; P<0.001), female (68%; P=0.014) patients in the PMBL group compared to the control group (median: 56 years; range, 15-85 years; 43.2% female). Bulky disease and elevated levels of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) were more frequent in the PMBL group (P<0.001 and P=0.003, respectively). Nineteen (76%) PBML patients achieved complete remission, and 18 were alive at the last follow-up (median: 43 months; range, 1-92 months). There was no difference in the 3-year, overall survival rate (72%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 54.0-83.0 versus 70.1%, 95% CI, 109.0-126.0; P=0.686) between PMBL and control patients, respectively.
Compared to patients with non-mediastinal DLBCL, Korean patients with PMBL are predominantly young women with bulky disease and high LDH levels but with no significant difference in survival.
PMCID: PMC3974955  PMID: 24724065
Lymphoma; B cell; PMBL; Prognosis; Treatment
3.  Advanced POEMS syndrome treated with high-dose melphalan followed by autologous blood stem cell transplantation: a single-center experience 
Blood research  2014;49(1):42-48.
POEMS syndrome is a rare paraneoplastic syndrome associated with plasma cell dyscrasia. High-dose chemotherapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation has shown encouraging efficacy in the treatment of patients with POEMS syndrome. However, there are minimal reports on clinical outcomes after autologous stem cell transplantation for patients with advanced disease and very poor performance status.
We retrospectively evaluated 9 advanced POEMS syndrome patients, who had an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status score of 3 or 4, and were treated with high-dose melphalan therapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation from 2004 to 2011.
Eight patients achieved initial hematologic response, 4 of whom had complete responses. At a median follow-up of 44 months (range, 8-94 months), 7 patients were alive, with 3-year overall survival rate of 77.8%. There were no hematologic relapses in the survivors. One patient died of disease progression; the other died of pneumonia despite a hematologic response 3 months after autologous stem cell transplantation. All survivors achieved improvement in general performance status and in clinical response.
High-dose melphalan followed by autologous stem cell transplantation can be considered a valid treatment option even for patients with advanced POEMS syndrome.
PMCID: PMC3974956  PMID: 24724066
POEMS syndrome; Stem cell transplantation; Chemotherapy; Severity; Illness index
4.  18F-FDG PET in Patients with Primary Systemic Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma: Differential Features According to Expression of Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase 
Primary systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) is divided into two entities according to the expression of anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK). We investigated 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (18F-FDG PET) findings in primary systemic ALCL according to ALK expression.
Thirty-seven patients who had baseline PET before CHOP (cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine and prednisolone)-based chemotherapy were enrolled. Among them, patients who underwent interim and/or post-therapy PET were further investigated for the treatment response and survival analysis. Baseline PET was analyzed visually and semi-quantitatively using peakSUV, and interim and post-therapy PETs were visually analyzed.
All cases were 18F-FDG-avid on baseline PET. The peakSUV of ALK-positive ALCL (n = 16, 18.7 ± 10.5) was higher than that of ALK-negative ALCL (n = 21, 10.0 ± 4.9) (P = 0.006). In ALK-negative ALCL, complete response (CR) rate in negative-interim PET was higher than positive-interim PET (100 % vs 37.5 %, P = 0.02); however, there was no such difference in ALK-positive ALCL (100 % vs 75 %, P = 0.19). The 3-year progression-free survival (PFS) was not significantly different between ALK-positive and ALK-negative ALCL (72.7 % vs 47.6 %, P = 0.34). In ALK-negative ALCL, negative interim and post-therapy PET patients had better 3-year PFS than positive interim (83.3 % vs 25.0 %, P = 0.06) and post-therapy PET patients (70.0 % vs 20.0 %, P = 0.04). In contrast, ALK-positive ALCL had no such differences between PFS and PET results.
On baseline PET, all cases showed 18F-FDG-avidity, and ALK expression was related to higher 18F-FDG uptake. ALK-positive patients tend to have better PFS than ALK-negative patients. Negative-interim PET was a good indicator of CR, and interim or post-therapy PET was helpful for predicting the prognosis only in the ALK-negative group.
PMCID: PMC4035167  PMID: 24900120
Primary systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma; Anaplastic lymphoma kinase; 18F-FDG PET
5.  Clinical features and outcomes in patients with human immunodeficiency virus-negative, multicentric Castleman's disease: a single medical center experience 
Blood research  2014;49(4):253-258.
Multicentric Castleman's disease (CD) is commonly associated with poor prognosis, and well-known prognostic factors are scarce. We performed a retrospective analysis to define the clinical features and prognostic factors for patients with multicentric CD.
Between 1990 and 2013, 32 patients with multicentric CD were identified from the database of the Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. Clinicopathologic data were collected by reviewing the medical records. With the exclusion of 4 patients because of unknown human immunodeficiency virus infection status, 28 human immunodeficiency virus-negative patients with multicentric CD were included in this analysis.
Most of the patients were male (76%) and had a median age of 54 years. Hyaline vascular variant was the most common subtype (N=11, 39%). Hepatosplenomegaly (61%), fever (39%), edema (29%), and ascites (18%) were the most frequently reported symptoms and signs at diagnosis. With a median follow-up of 67 months, the 5-year overall survival (OS) was 77%. Patients with extravascular fluid accumulation (i.e., peripheral edema, ascites, and/or pleural effusions) were significantly associated with a poor survival rate (5-year OS, 94% vs. 56%; P=0.04). The extent of disease involvement was also a significant prognostic factor (5-year OS, 91% for involvement on a single side vs. 73% on both sides of the diaphragm; P=0.03). Other clinicopathologic factors were not significantly associated with patient survival.
Our findings suggest that the hyaline vascular variant is not a rare subtype of multicentric CD. Extravascular fluid accumulation and disseminated disease involvement seem to be significant prognostic factors.
PMCID: PMC4278007  PMID: 25548759
Multicentric Castleman's disease; Giant lymph node hyperplasia; Angiofollicular lymphoid hyperplasia; Prognosis; HIV
6.  Case series of precursor B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma 
Blood research  2014;49(4):270-274.
Precursor B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma (B-LBL) is an uncommon subtype of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), accounting for only 0.3% of NHL in adults and less than 10% of all LBL cases. Unlike T-cell LBL, it usually presents with extranodal involvement while sparing the bone marrow (BM). Among the 27 patients with LBL treated in the Asan Medical Center between January 2007 and March 2012, 3 had B-LBL. All had a good performance status and low International Prognostic Index. However, unlike most previously reported cases, the patients had lymphoma in their bone marrow and extranodal sites such as bone and lung. After intensive combination chemotherapy, one patient achieved a complete response and the other 2 patients, a partial response. Our experience suggests that multiple extranodal sites may be involved in B-LBL and BM involvement may not be as infrequent as previously thought. Furthermore, intensive chemotherapy seems to be effective.
PMCID: PMC4278010  PMID: 25548762
B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma; Chemotherapy; Bone marrow involvement
8.  Treatment of primary testicular diffuse large B cell lymphoma without prophylactic intrathecal chemotherapy: a single center experience 
Blood research  2014;49(3):170-176.
Primary testicular diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is a rare but aggressive extranodal lymphoma, and its relapse in the central nervous system (CNS) is a major concern during treatment. Despite this, the role of intrathecal prophylaxis in primary testicular DLBCL remains controversial.
We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 14 patients with primary testicular DLBCL diagnosed between November 2000 and June 2012, and analyzed the CNS relapse rate in patients treated without intrathecal prophylaxis. Survival curves were estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method.
The median age at diagnosis was 57 years (range, 41-79 years). Unilateral testicular involvement was observed in 13 patients. Nine patients had stage I, 1 had stage II, and 4 had stage IV disease. The international prognostic index was low or low-intermediate risk in 12 patients and high-intermediate risk in 2 patients. Thirteen patients underwent orchiectomy. All the patients received systemic chemotherapy without intrathecal prophylaxis, and prophylactic radiotherapy was administered to the contralateral testis in 12 patients. The median follow-up period of surviving patients was 39 months (range, 10-139 months). Median overall survival was not reached and the median progression-free survival was 3.8 years. Four patients experienced relapse, but CNS relapse was observed in only one patient (7.1%) with stage IV disease, 27 months after a complete response.
Even without intrathecal prophylaxis, the rate of relapse in the CNS was lower in the Korean patients with primary testicular DLBCL compared to prior reports.
PMCID: PMC4188782  PMID: 25325036
Diffuse large B cell lymphoma; Intrathecal prophylaxis; Primary testicular lymphoma
9.  Clinical Factors Associated with Response or Survival after Chemotherapy in Patients with Waldenström Macroglobulinemia in Korea 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:253243.
Waldenström's macroglobulinemia (WM) is a B-cell proliferative malignancy characterized by immunoglobulin M monoclonal gammopathy and bone marrow infiltration by lymphoplasmacytic cells. Clinical features and cytogenetics of WM in Asia including Republic of Korea remain unclear. Moreover, no study has reported treatment outcomes in patients with WM treated with novel agent combined with conventional chemotherapy. This study investigated clinical features and assessed treatment outcomes with novel agent and conventional chemotherapy in Republic of Korea. Data from all (n = 71) patients with newly diagnosed WM at 17 hospitals who received chemotherapy between January 2005 and December 2012 were collected retrospectively. The median age of patients was 66 years (range: 37–92 years) and male to female ratio was 5 : 1. Patients treated with novel agent combined chemotherapy displayed higher overall response rate (ORR) compared to conventional chemotherapy alone (92.9% versus 52.6%, P = 0.006). The 5-year overall survival rate was 62.6% (95% confidence interval: 34.73–111.07). Use of novel agents produced higher ORR but survival benefit was not apparent due to the small number of patients and short follow-up duration. Further studies are needed to confirm the efficacy of novel agents in patients with WM.
PMCID: PMC4065725  PMID: 24995279
10.  Expression of CD99 in Multiple Myeloma: A Clinicopathologic and Immunohistochemical Study of 170 Cases 
Korean Journal of Pathology  2014;48(3):209-216.
Multiple myeloma (MM) is a heterogeneous and ultimately fatal disease. Risk stratification using prognostic biomarkers is crucial to individualize treatments. We sought to investigate the role of CD99, a transmembrane protein highly expressed in many hematopoietic cells including subpopulations of normal and neoplastic plasma cells, for MM risk stratification.
CD99 expression was measured in paraffin samples of bone marrow and extramedullary biopsies of 170 patients with MM. Patients were divided into those with high score (moderately and strongly positive) and low score (negative and weakly positive), with all staining being cytoplasmic and/or membranous.
High anti-CD99 immunostaining was observed in 72 of 136 (52.9%) bone marrow biopsies and 24 of 87 (27.6%) extramedullary biopsies in MM. High CD99 expression of extramedullary specimens was associated with significantly longer overall survival (OS; p=.016). High CD99 expression of extramedullary specimens was also associated with better prognosis in the nonautologous stem cell transplantation group of MM patients (p=.044). In multivariate analysis, International Staging System stage was an independent prognostic factor, whereas CD99 expression was no longer statistically significant.
Expression of CD99 in extramedullary specimens was correlated with longer OS, suggesting that CD99 may be a helpful immunohistochemical marker for risk stratification.
PMCID: PMC4087134  PMID: 25013419
CD99; Multiple myeloma; Immunostaining; Autologous stem cell transplantation
11.  Abbreviated chemotherapy for limited-stage diffuse large B-cell lymphoma after complete resection 
Blood research  2014;49(2):115-119.
Abbreviated chemotherapy followed by radiotherapy or full cycles of chemotherapy is recommended as a standard treatment for limited-stage (LS) diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). After complete resection of tumors, however, Burkitt and childhood B-cell Non-Hodgkin lymphoma show favorable outcomes, even after abbreviated chemotherapy of only 2 or 3 cycles. We investigated the effectiveness of abbreviated chemotherapy in patients with LS DLBCL after complete tumor resection.
We retrospectively reviewed 18 patients with LS DLBCL who underwent complete tumor resection followed by either 3 or 4 cycles of chemotherapy between March 2002 and May 2010.
With a median follow-up period of 57.9 months (range, 31.8-130.2 months), no patients experienced disease relapse or progression; however, 1 patient experienced secondary acute myeloid leukemia during follow-up. The 5-year progression-free survival rate and overall survival rate were 93.3% and 94.1%, respectively.
These results warrant further investigation into abbreviated chemotherapy as an alternative treatment for patients who have undergone complete resection of LS DLBCL.
PMCID: PMC4090332  PMID: 25025013
Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; Limited Stage; Resection; Abbreviated chemotherapy
12.  CD163 Expression Was Associated with Angiogenesis and Shortened Survival in Patients with Uniformly Treated Classical Hodgkin Lymphoma 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(1):e87066.
Recent studies have reported the prognostic value of tissue-associated magrophages (TAMs) in classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL). In addition, TAMs are implicated in the tumor angiogenesis. In this study, we examined the prognostic relevance of TAMs in relation to vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression and angiogenesis in uniformly treated cases of cHL.
Diagnostic tissue from 116 patients with ABVD-treated cHL was evaluated retrospectively by immunohistochemical analysis for CD68, CD163 and VEGF expression and for CD31 expression as a measure of microvessel density (MVD).
High CD163 expression (≥35% of cellularity) correlated with VEGF expression (Pearson’s Chi-square test, P = 0.008) and MVD (Spearman correlation coefficient 0.310, P<0.001). High CD163 expression was associated with inferior event-free survival (EFS, P = 0.005) and overall survival (OS, P<0.001) in univariate analysis. In multivariate analysis, high CD163 expression was strongly associated with inferior EFS (P = 0.043) and OS (P = 0.008). Patients with high MVD had a lower OS than those with low MVD, but the difference was not significant (P = 0.071, respectively). While high expression of CD68 was also associated with inferior EFS (P = 0.007), it showed no correlation with VEGF or MVD.
Our data confirms that CD163 expression provides independent prognostic information in cHL. The correlation of CD163 with VEGF expression and MVD suggests the role of CD163-positive cells in tumor angiogenesis of cHL.
PMCID: PMC3906082  PMID: 24489836
13.  Intestinal Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma: An Evaluation of Different Staging Systems 
The gastrointestinal tract is the most common primary extranodal site for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). However, there is no consensus on the most appropriate staging system for intestinal DLBCL. We evaluated the utility of the modified Ann Arbor system, the Lugano system, and the Paris staging system (a modification of the Tumor, Node, Metastases [TNM] staging for epithelial tumors) in 66 cases of resected intestinal DLBCL. The cases were treated with surgery, plus either cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisolone (CHOP) chemotherapy alone (n=26) or with the addition of rituximab immunotherapy (n=40). Median follow-up time was 40.4 months (range, 2.1-171.6 months). Fifty-six patients (84.8%) achieved complete remission. The overall 5-yr survival rate was 86.4% (57/66). Of the stage categories defined for each staging system, only the T stage of the Paris classification showed prognostic significance for overall survival by univariate analysis. However, none of the stage parameters was significantly correlated with patient survival on multivariate analysis. In conclusion, the results suggest that the T stage of the Paris classification system may be a prognostic indicator in intestinal DLBCL. The results also imply that in surgically resected intestinal DLBCL, the addition of rituximab to the CHOP regimen does not confer significant survival advantage.
PMCID: PMC3890477  PMID: 24431906
Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse; Intestines; Stage; Rituximab
14.  Prognostic Significance of Absolute Lymphocyte Count/Absolute Monocyte Count Ratio at Diagnosis in Patients with Multiple Myeloma 
Korean Journal of Pathology  2013;47(6):526-533.
Absolute lymphocyte count (ALC) in peripheral blood has recently been reported to be an independent prognostic factor in multiple myeloma (MM). Previous studies indicated that the absolute monocyte count (AMC) in peripheral blood reflects the state of the tumor microenvironment in lymphomas. Neither the utility of the AMC nor its relationship with ALC has been studied in MM.
The prognostic value of ALC, AMC, and the ALC/AMC ratio at the time of diagnosis was retrospectively examined in 189 patients with MM.
On univariate analysis, low ALC (<1,400 cells/µL), high AMC (≥490 cells/µL), and low ALC/AMC ratio (<2.9) were correlated with worse overall survival (OS) (p=.002, p=.038, and p=.001, respectively). On multivariate analysis, the ALC/AMC ratio was an independent prognostic factor (p=.047), whereas ALC and AMC were no longer statistical significant. Low ALC, high AMC, and low ALC/AMC ratio were associated with poor prognostic factors such as high International Staging System stage, plasmablastic morphology, hypoalbuminemia, and high β2-microglobulin.
Univariate analysis demonstrated that changes in ALC, AMC, and the ALC/AMC ratio are associated with patient survival in MM. Multivariate analysis showed that, of these factors, the ALC/AMC ratio was an independent prognostic factor for OS.
PMCID: PMC3887154  PMID: 24421845
Multiple myeloma; Lymphocytes; Monocytes; Lymphocyte/monocyte ratio; Prognosis
15.  Prognostic value of immunohistochemical algorithms in gastrointestinal diffuse large B-cell lymphoma 
Blood research  2013;48(4):266-273.
Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is a heterogeneous clinicopathological entity, and its molecular classification into germinal center B cell-like (GCB) and activated B cell-like (ABC) subtypes using gene expression profile analysis has been shown to have prognostic significance. Recent attempts have been made to find an association between immunohistochemical findings and molecular subgroup, although the clinical utility of immunohistochemical classification remains uncertain.
The clinicopathological features and follow-up data of 68 cases of surgically resected gastrointestinal DLBCL were analyzed. Using the immunohistochemical findings on tissue microarray, the cases were categorized into GCB and non-GCB subtypes according to the algorithms proposed by Hans, Muris, Choi, and Tally.
The median patient age was 56 years (range, 26-77 years). Of the 68 cases included, 39.7% (27/68) involved the stomach, and 60.3% (41/68) involved the intestines. The GCB and non-GCB groups sorted according to Hans, Choi, and Tally algorithms, but not the Muris algorithm, were closely concordant (Hans vs. Choi, κ=0.775, P<0.001; Hans vs. Tally, κ=0.724, P<0.001; Choi vs. Tally, κ=0.528, P<0.001). However, there was no prognostic difference between the GCB and non-GCB subtypes, regardless of the algorithm used. On univariate survival analyses, international prognostic index risk group and depth of tumor invasion both had prognostic significance.
The Hans, Choi, and Tally algorithms might represent identical DLBCL subgroups, but this grouping did not correlate with prognosis. Further studies may delineate the association between immunohistochemical subgroups and prognosis.
PMCID: PMC3894385  PMID: 24466551
Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; Gastrointestinal tract; Immunohistochemistry; Prognosis
16.  The Ratio of the Absolute Lymphocyte Count to the Absolute Monocyte Count Is Associated with Prognosis in Hodgkin's Lymphoma: Correlation with Tumor-Associated Macrophages 
The Oncologist  2012;17(6):871-880.
The prognostic value of the peripheral blood absolute lymphocyte count (ALC), absolute monocyte count (AMC), and ALC/AMC ratio at diagnosis in patients with classic Hodgkin's lymphoma was evaluated, and relationships with tumor-associated macrophages were examined.
Although most patients with classical Hodgkin's lymphoma (cHL) have a long survival duration, the current risk stratification is imperfect. A recent study suggested a prognostic role for the peripheral blood absolute lymphocyte count/absolute monocyte count (ALC/AMC) ratio at diagnosis in cHL. It is intriguing to investigate the significance of the ALC/AMC ratio in relation to tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs), yet another prognostic factor for cHL.
We examined the prognostic impact of the ALC, AMC, and ALC/AMC ratio in 312 cHL patients (median age, 37 years) using receiver operating characteristic curve analysis for optimal cutoff values, and compared these with TAM content.
The median follow-up was 65 months (range, 0.1–245 months). On univariate analysis, a low ALC/AMC ratio (<2.9) was correlated with a poorer overall survival (OS) outcome. A subgroup analysis of patients with limited-stage disease showed that the ALC/AMC ratio was significantly correlated with the OS time. Multivariate analysis showed the ALC/AMC ratio to be an independent prognostic factor for OS outcome. A Spearman correlation test of TAM content showed a negative correlation with the ALC/AMC ratio and a positive correlation with the peripheral blood macrophage percentage.
This study suggests that the ALC/AMC ratio may be a simple, inexpensive, and independent prognostic factor for OS outcome in patients with cHL and may have a role in the stratification of cHL patients in addition to the International Prognostic Score and TAM content.
PMCID: PMC3380887  PMID: 22588324
Hodgkin's lymphoma; Monocytes; Lymphocytes; Lymphocyte/monocyte ratio; Prognosis
19.  Immunophenotypic Characterization and Quantification of Neoplastic Bone Marrow Plasma Cells by Multiparametric Flow Cytometry and Its Clinical Significance in Korean Myeloma Patients 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2013;28(4):542-549.
Multiparametric flow cytometry (MFC) allows discrimination between normal and neoplastic plasma cells (NeoPCs) within the bone marrow plasma cell (BMPC) compartment. This study sought to characterize immunophenotypes and quantitate the proportion of NeoPCs in BMPCs to diagnose plasma cell myeoma (PCM) and evaluate the prognostic impact of this method. We analyzed the MFC data of the bone marrow aspirates of 76 patients with PCM and 33 patients with reactive plasmacytosis. MFC analysis was performed using three combinations: CD38/CD138/-/CD45; CD56/CD20/CD138/CD19; and CD27/CD28/CD138/CD117. The plasma cells of patients with reactive plasmacytosis demonstrated normal immunophenotypic patterns. Aberrant marker expression was observed in NeoPCs, with negative CD19 expression observed in 100% of cases, CD56+ in 73.7%, CD117+ in 15.2%, CD27- in 10.5%, CD20+ in 9.2%, and CD28+ in 1.3%. In PCM patients, more than 20% of NeoPCs/BMPCs were significantly associated with factors suggestive of poor clinical outcomes. Patients who were CD27- or CD56+/CD27-, demonstrated shorter overall survival than patients of other CD56/CD27 combinations. Our results support the clinical value of immunophenotyping and quantifying NeoPCs in PCM patients. This strategy could help to reveal poor prognostic categories and delineate surrogate markers for risk stratification in PCM patients.
PMCID: PMC3617306  PMID: 23580331
Multiple Myeloma; Flow Cytometry; Immunophenotyping; Neoplastic Cells; Plasma Cells
20.  Simplified flow cytometric immunophenotyping panel for multiple myeloma, CD56/CD19/CD138(CD38)/CD45, to differentiate neoplastic myeloma cells from reactive plasma cells 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2012;47(4):260-266.
Flow cytometric immunophenotyping has been used to identify neoplastic plasma cell populations in patients with multiple myeloma (MM). Previous reports have described the use of several antigens, including CD38, CD138, CD56, CD117, CD52, CD19 and CD45, to distinguish distinct populations of plasma cells. The aim of this study was to evaluate a simplified immunophenotyping panel for MM analysis.
A total of 70 patients were enrolled in the study, 62 of which were newly diagnosed with MM (untreated), whereas the remaining 8 were undergoing bone marrow assessment as part of follow-up after treatment (treated). Treated cases included 3 patients with relapse and 5 patients with persistence of MM. Multiparametric flow cytometric immunophenotyping was performed using monoclonal antibodies against CD56, CD19, CD138 (CD38), and CD45.
In differential counts, plasma cells in bone marrow (BM) accounted for 3.6-93.2% of the total nucleated cell count. The positive expression rates of CD56, CD19, CD138, and CD45 in neoplastic myeloma cells were 83.9%, 0%, 98.4%, and 37.1%, respectively, among the 62 untreated cases, and 75.0%, 0%, 87.5%, and 37.5%, respectively, among the 8 treated cases. CD19 expression of neoplastic plasma cells was negative in both untreated and treated cases.
The simplified immunophenotyping panel, CD56/CD19/CD138(CD38)/CD45, is useful for distinguishing neoplastic myeloma cells from reactive plasma cells in clinical practice. In addition, CD19 represents the most valuable antigen for identifying neoplastic myeloma cells in patients with MM.
PMCID: PMC3538797  PMID: 23320004
Multiple myeloma; Flow cytometry; Immunophenotyping; Neoplastic plasma cells; CD19 negativity
21.  Prognostic factors in primary diffuse large B-cell lymphoma of adrenal gland treated with rituximab-CHOP chemotherapy from the Consortium for Improving Survival of Lymphoma (CISL) 
The objective of this study was to identify prognostic factors for survival in patients with primary diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) of the adrenal gland.
Thirty one patients diagnosed with primary adrenal DLBCL from 14 Korean institutions and treated with R-CHOP (rituximab, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine and prednisone) were analyzed.
Complete remission (CR) and overall response rate after R-CHOP chemotherapy were 54.8% and 87.0%. The 2-year estimates of overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) were 68.3% and 51.1%. In patients achieving CR, significant prolongations of OS (P = 0.029) and PFS (P = 0.005) were observed. Ann Arbor stage had no influence on OS. There was no significant difference in OS between patients with unilateral involvement of adrenal gland and those with bilateral involvement. When staging was modified to include bilateral adrenal involvement as one extranodal site, early stage (I or II) significantly correlated with longer OS (P = 0.021) and PFS (P <0.001).
Contrary to prior reports, our data suggests that outcomes of primary adrenal DLBCL are encouraging using a regimen of R-CHOP, and that achieving CR after R-CHOP is predictive of survival. Likewise, our modified staging system may have prognostic value.
PMCID: PMC3445827  PMID: 22889180
Primary adrenal lymphoma; Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; Prognostic factor; R-CHOP
22.  YM155 Induces EGFR Suppression in Pancreatic Cancer Cells 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(6):e38625.
YM155, which inhibits the anti-apoptotic protein survivin, is known to exert anti-tumor effects in various cancers, including prostate and lung cancer. However, there are few reports describing the inhibitory effect of YM155 on human pancreatic cancers that highly express survivin. Here, we tested the effects of YM155 on a variety of cancer cell lines, including pancreatic cancer cells. We found that YM155 exerts an anti-proliferative effect in pancreatic cancer cells, inducing cell death through suppression of XIAP (X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis) as well as survivin without affecting the anti-apoptotic proteins Bcl-xL or Mcl-1. YM155 also inhibited tumor growth in vivo, reducing the size of pancreatic cancer cell line MIAPaCa-2 xenografts by 77.1% on day 31. Western blot analyses further showed that YM155 downregulated phosphoinoside 3-kinase (PI3K) expression and reduced the levels of phosphorylated (activated) extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and STAT3 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) in PANC-1 cells. Interestingly, we also found that YM155 downregulated the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in various cancer cell lines and induced the EGFR phosphorylation and ubiquitination of EGFR in PANC-1 cells. YM155 also modestly promoted the ubiquitination of survivin and XIAP. Therefore, YM155 acts through modulation of EGFR and survivin expression to subsequently reduce survival. We suggest that YM155 has potential as a therapeutic agent in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.
PMCID: PMC3377633  PMID: 22723871
23.  Yttrium-90 ibritumomab tiuxetan plus busulfan, cyclophosphamide, and etoposide (BuCyE) versus BuCyE alone as a conditioning regimen for non-Hodgkin lymphoma 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2012;47(2):119-125.
Radioimmunotherapy agents have a highly significant role in autologous stem cell transplantation as they improve tolerability and increase the efficacy of the conditioning regimen.
We retrospectively analyzed the efficacy and toxicity of yttrium-90 ibritumomab tiuxetan (Zevalin) combined with intravenous busulfan, cyclophosphamide, and etoposide (Z-BuCyE) compared with those of BuCyE alone followed by autologous stem cell transplantation in patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). The efficacy, toxicity, and engraftment characteristics were compared between 19 patients who received Z-BuCyE and 19 historical controls who received BuCyE.
The 2 treatment groups shared similar baseline characteristics. The median time to platelet engraftment (>20×109/L) and neutrophil engraftment (>0.5×109/L) did not significantly differ between the Z-BuCyE group (12 days and 10 days, respectively) and the BuCyE group (12 days and 10 days, respectively). No significant differences were observed between the groups with respect to toxicities and treatment-related mortality. The median follow-up period was 30.4 months, and median event-free survival was generally better in the Z-BuCyE group (12.5 months) vs. the BuCyE group (6.2 months, P=0.236). No significant difference in overall survival between the groups was noted.
Adding ibritumomab tiuxetan to BuCyE high-dose chemotherapy may benefit patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell NHL with no risk of additional toxicity.
PMCID: PMC3389060  PMID: 22783358
Yttrium-90 ibritumomab tiuxetan; BuCyE; Autologous stem cell transplantation; Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
24.  Relapse pattern and prognostic factors for patients with primary CNS lymphoma 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2012;47(2):155-156.
PMCID: PMC3389068  PMID: 22783366
25.  Impact of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Phenotype on Prognosis in Patients with Stage I Breast Cancer 
Journal of Breast Cancer  2012;15(2):197-202.
Although most patients with stage I breast cancer have a good prognosis, their clinical outcomes may vary significantly. We assessed clinical outcomes and prognostic factors in stage I breast cancer patients with and without triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) phenotype.
Of 2,489 patients undergoing breast cancer surgery between January 1998 and December 2002, 554 (22.3%) had stage I breast cancer (tumor size ≤2 cm, and lymph node-negative). TNBC was defined as a primary tumor negative for estrogen and progesterone receptors (Allred scores <3/8) and for HER2/neu (0-1+ by immunohistochemistry).
Of the 554 patients with stage I breast cancer, 78 (14.1%) had TNBC. A significant proportion of TNBC patients had histologic grade 3 tumors (47.4% vs. 34.5%, p=0.031) and tumors >1 cm (87.2% vs. 75.8%, p=0.028) and received adjuvant chemotherapy (79.5% vs. 44.7%, p<0.001). During a median follow-up time of 8.7 years, 72 patients experienced tumor recurrences; 18 (23.1%) in the TNBC group and 54 (11.3%) in the non-TNBC group (p=0.010), with cumulative 3-year rate of recurrence of 12.8% and 5.3%, respectively (p=0.010). Ten-year relapse-free survival (RFS; 75.6% vs. 87.5%, p=0.004) and overall survival (OS; 83.0% vs. 91.4%, p=0.002) rates were significantly lower in the TNBC group. Multivariate analysis showed that triple negativity and histologic grade were independent predictors of shorter RFS and OS.
TNBC had more aggressive clinicopathologic characteristics and was associated with poorer survival in patients with stage I breast cancer. More intensive adjuvant chemotherapy or a different therapeutic strategy targeting this population is warranted.
PMCID: PMC3395743  PMID: 22807937
Breast neoplasms; HER2/neu; Prognosis

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