Stage-related differences of mitotic and apoptotic indices, and bcl-2 protein expression in diffusely growing non-Hodgkin's lymphomas

Donatella Spina, Lorenzo Leoncini, Tiziana Megha, Maria T. Del Vecchio, Chiara Minacci, Simonetta Poggi, Stefano Pileri, Piero Tosi, Rainer Kraft, Jean A. Laissue, Hans Cottier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The present study examined whether growth characteristics of diffusely growing non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (NHL) may differ as a function of stage. Among 105 NHL of various types and sub-types (REAL [Revised European-American Lymphoma] classification), localized (Ann Arbor pathologic stages I + II) lymphomas exhibited clearly higher indices for mitotic activity, apoptosis and cell turnover, as well as a significantly lower percentage of cells containing immunohistochemically detectable bcl-2 protein, than disseminated (stages III + IV) NHL. A similar pattern emerged when high-grade (Kiel classification) lymphomas only were evaluated. Low-grade NHL showed analogous, but less marked, stage-dependent characteristics, with the exception of median percentages of bcl-2+ cells, which remained comparable in all stages. Our findings are consistent with the notion that dissemination of diffusely growing NHL is usually associated with reduced cell turnover and, in high-grade lymphomas, with the generation of longer-lived cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)436-440
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1996


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology

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