Clues to pathogenesis of Waldenström macroglobulinemia and immunoglobulin M monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance provided by analysis of immunoglobulin heavy chain gene rearrangement and clustering of B-cell receptors

Marzia Varettoni, Silvia Zibellini, Daniela Capello, Luca Arcaini, Davide Rossi, Cristiana Pascutto, Sara Rattotti, Silvia Mangiacavalli, Lara Pochintesta, Manuel Gotti, Gianluca Gaidano, Mario Cazzola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We characterized immunoglobulin heavy chain (IGH) gene rearrangements and searched for clusters of stereotyped B-cell receptors in 123 patients with Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM; n = 59) or immunoglobulin M monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (IgM-MGUS) (n = 64). A productive monoclonal IGHV-D-J rearrangement was obtained in 99/123 patients (80%). Immunoglobulin heavy chain variable (IGHV) genes were mutated in 94/99 patients (95%) with a median somatic hypermutation rate of 6.7% (2.1-14.5). Compared with the normal B-cell repertoire, patients with WM/IgM-MGUS showed an over-representation of the IGHV3 subgroup (83% vs. 55%, p <0.0001) and an under-representation of IGHV1 (7% vs. 14%, p = 0.04) and IGHV4 (7% vs. 23%, p = 0.0001) subgroups. At the gene level, in WM/IgM-MGUS there was an over-representation of IGHV3-23 (24% vs. 12%, p = 0.0003), IGHV3-64 (3% vs. <1%, p = 0.003), IGHV3-7 (12% vs. 4%, p = 0.0001) and IGHV3-74 (9% vs. 2%, p <0.0001), while IGHV4-39 was never used (0 vs. 5%, p = 0.03). Intra-WM/IgM-MGUS search for HCDR3 similarity showed no association fulfilling criteria for stereotyped receptors. WM/IgM-MGUS sequences were unrelated to known chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), splenic marginal zone lymphoma (SMZL) or mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) subsets. In conclusion, the IGHV gene usage in WM and IgM-MGUS is remarkably biased as compared to the normal B-cell repertoire. WM and IgM-MGUS-specific HCDR3 clusters do not occur with a frequency detectable with currently available databases, not supporting a B-cell receptor-driven pathogenesis in WM and IgM-MGUS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2485-2489
Number of pages5
JournalLeukemia and Lymphoma
Volume54
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • IGH rearrangement
  • IgM-MGUS
  • Stereotyped BCR
  • Waldenström macroglobulinemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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