Co-expression of CD79a (JCB117) and CD3 by lymphoblastic lymphoma

Emanuela Pilozzi, Karen Pulford, Margaret Jones, Hans Konrad Müller-Hermelink, Brunangelo Falini, Elisabeth Ralfkiaer, Stefano Pileri, Francesco Pezzella, Christine De Wolf-Peeters, Daniel Arber, Harald Stein, David Mason, Kevin Gatter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia/lymphoma is a malignant disorder derived from the clonal proliferation of lymphoid precursor cells. Whether the tumour cells are of B- or T-cell type is an important criterion for prognosis which has not been available previously to pathologists, due to the lack of a reliable early B-cell marker functioning on routinely processed material. This has changed with the production of monoclonal antibodies against the B- cell signalling molecule CD79a. CD79a is expressed on normal and neoplastic B cells from the early stages of B-cell maturation and has been considered to be B-cell-specific. Currently available antibodies against CD79a, in particular JCB117, allow the identification of B cells, and hence B lymphoblastic disease, in paraffin-embedded material. In this study, the expression of CD79a (JCB117) and CD3 has been investigated in 149 cases of T and 68 cases of B lymphoblastic leukaemia/lymphoma. For the first time, co- expression of CD79a (JCB117) and CD3 is reported in 10 per cent of cases of T lymphoblastic leukaemia/lymphoma. This finding raises questions about the co- expression of T- and B-cell markers in the development of lymphocytes, benign as well as malignant, and alerts pathologists to a potential problem in diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)140-143
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Pathology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1998


  • CD3
  • CD79a
  • Lymphoblastic lymphoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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