Peripheral T-cell lymphomas not otherwise specified (PTCLs/NOS) are rare and aggressive tumours whose molecular pathogenesis and diagnosis are still challenging. The microRNA (miRNA) profile of 23 PTCLs/NOS was generated and compared with that of normal T-lymphocytes (CD4+, CD8+, naive, activated). The differentially expressed miRNA signature was compared with the gene expression profile (GEP) of the same neoplasms. The obtained gene patterns were tested in an independent cohort of PTCLs/NOS. The miRNA profile of PTCLs/NOS then was compared with that of 10 angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphomas (AITLs), 6 anaplastic large-cell lymphomas (ALCLs)/ALK+ and 6 ALCLs/ALK - . Differentially expressed miRNAs were validated in an independent set of 20 PTCLs/NOS, 20 AITLs, 19 ALCLs/ALK - and 15 ALCLs/ALK+. Two hundred and thirty-six miRNAs were found to differentiate PTCLs/NOS from activated T-lymphocytes. To assess which miRNAs impacted on GEP, a multistep analysis was performed, which identified all miRNAs inversely correlated to different potential target genes. One of the most discriminant miRNAs was selected and its expression was found to affect the global GEP of the tumours. Moreover, two sets of miRNAs were identified distinguishing PTCL/NOS from AITL and ALCL/ALK - , respectively. The diagnostic accuracy of this tool was very high (83.54%) and its prognostic value validated.
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