Lymph node immunohistology in intravenous drug abusers with persistent generalized lymphadenopathy

A. Carbone, R. Manconi, A. Poletti, U. Tirelli, P. De Paoli, G. Santini, S. Diodato, E. Grigoletto, L. Santi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lymph node biopsy specimens from 16 intravenous drug abusers with persistent generalized lymphadenopathy were evaluated by immunohistochemical methods using a panel of antisera to detect different cell populations. The 11 cases that we tested on cryostat sections showed an increased number of Leu-2a-positive cells (cytotoxic-suppressor phenotype) in the follicular centers and a significantly reduced helper-to-suppressor T-cell mean ratio when compared with control tissues. In these 11 patients the peripheral helper-suppressor ratio was at the lower normal limit or inverted. Ten cases tested for anti-human T-cell lymphotropic virus type III antibodies were positive. In all 16 cases, immunohistology and paraffin-embedded sections demonstrated a polyclonal B population; 12 of 15 patients tested had polyclonal hypergammaglobulinemia, mostly IgG. The mixed-cell population of the lymph node sinuses was composed mostly of Leu-M1-positive and lysozyme-positive cells and, to a lesser extent, by α1-antichymotrypsin-positive and S100 protein-positive cells. It seems that many of the immunologic dysfunctions found in these patients appear to be reflected in a fairly repetitive immunohistologic pattern.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1007-1012
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology


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