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Cancer. 1991 Nov 1;68(9):1954-62.

A pathologic study of childhood lymphoma in Taiwan with special reference to peripheral T-cell lymphoma and the association with Epstein-Barr viral infection.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, Republic of Taiwan.


The authors retrospectively reviewed the clinicopathologic and immunologic features of 65 consecutive cases of childhood lymphoma reported between 1980 and 1989. Southern blot hybridization was also performed in 23 cases to study their association with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1). The 65 cases included 56 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) (86%) and 9 Hodgkin's disease (HD) (14%). The NHL could be classified into the following groups: Group I, small noncleaved cell lymphoma (20 cases); Group II, lymphoblastic lymphoma (17 cases); Group III, large cell lymphoma (17 cases); and miscellaneous (2 cases). There was no follicular lymphoma case. Immunohistochemical study on paraffin sections and/or frozen specimens in 47 cases of NHL showed that all the Group I cases belonged to B-cell neoplasm (17 of 17 cases); most of the Group II cases belonged to T-cell neoplasm (9 of 14 cases); and most of the Group III cases were peripheral T-cell lymphoma (PTL) (8 of 16 cases), including 2 cases of Ki-1 lymphoma. The majority of childhood NHL belonged to high-grade malignancy with an aggressive clinical course (median survival time, 8 months). The EBV DNA could be detected from the tumor tissues in 4 of 6 PTL, but in none of the remaining 19 cases of NHL including 6 Burkitt's type lymphomas. HTLV-1 proviral genome was not detected in all specimens examined. The authors concluded that the distribution pattern and clinicopathologic feature of childhood lymphoma in Taiwan are comparable to that in Japan and western countries. The frequent association of EBV with aggressive PTL was unique and deserves additional investigation.

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