Analysis of the immunoglobulin receptor (IGR) variable heavy- and light-chain sequences on 17 hepatitis C virus (HCV)-associated non-Hodgkin lymphomas (NHLs) (9 patients also had type II mixed cryoglobulinemia [MC] syndrome and 8 had NHL unrelated to MC) and analysis of intraclonal diversity on 8 of them suggest that such malignant lymphoproliferations derive from an antigen-driven pathologic process, with a selective pressure for the maintenance of a functional IgR and a negative pressure for additional amino acid mutations in the framework regions (FRs). For almost all NHLs, both heavy- and light-chain complementarity-determining regions (CDR3) showed the highest similarity to antibodies with rheumatoid factor (RF) activity that have been found in the MC syndrome, thus suggesting that a common antigenic stimulus is involved in MC syndrome and in HCV-associated lymphomagenesis. Moreover, because HCV is the recognized pathologic agent of MC and the CDR3 amino acid sequences of some HCV-associated NHLs also present a high homology for antibody specific for the E2 protein of HCV, it may be reasonable to speculate that HCV E2 protein is one of the chronic antigenic stimuli involved in the lymphomagenetic process. Finally, the use of specific segments, in particular the D segment, in assembling the IgH chain of IgR seems to confer B-cell disorders with the property to produce antibody with RF activity, which may contribute to the manifestation of an overt MC syndrome. (C) 2000 by The American Society of Hematology.
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - Nov 15 2000|
ASJC Scopus subject areas