BACKGROUND. Posttransplantation lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLDs) are heterogeneous lymphoid proliferations representing a major complication of solid organ transplant. This study details the clinicopathological and molecular features of 17 B-cell PTLDs observed in a single center series of 988 heart and/or lung transplant recipients. METHODS. Cases were classified according to World Health Organization lymphoma classification and tested for Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV), clonality, histogenetic phenotypic (CD10, Bcl-6, MUM1, CD138), and genotypic (immunoglobulin and BCL-6 genes somatic hypermutation) markers. RESULTS. This series of 17 PTLDs included: two B-cell monoclonal polymorphic PTLDs and 15 B-cell monomorphic PTLDs (13 diffuse large B-cell lymphomas [DLBCL] and 2 Burkitt lymphomas [BL]). EBV was detected in 9/17 cases. A monoclonal immunoglobulin variable (IGV) genes rearrangement was documented in 17/17 cases; IGV somatic hypermutation was found in 88% of cases, indicating a prevalent origin from germinal center (GC)-experienced B cells. Using immunophenotypic markers, three histogenetic profiles were identified: a) CD10/bcl-6/MUM1/CD138, mimicking GC B-cells; b) CD10-/bcl-6+/MUM1+/CD138-, reminiscent of B-cells at the latest phases of GC reaction; and c) CD10-/bcl-6-/MUM1+/CD138±, consistent with preterminally differentiated B-cells. CONCLUSIONS. Correlation between morphology, histogenesis, and EBV status demonstrated a high degree of homogeneity in the two GC-related groups, mostly including EBV-negative cases with BL and DLBCL-centroblastic features; the third group, consisting of post GC EBV-positive cases, was histologically less homogeneous, as it included polymorphic PTLDs and DLBCL with immunoblastic and anaplastic features. The EBV-negative cases with GC histogenetic phenotype showed a slightly better outcome; however, such less aggressive prognostic trend was not confirmed by statistical analysis.
- Molecular biology
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