Send to

Choose Destination
Cytometry. 2000 Jun 15;42(3):180-7.

Circulating CD4+ T lymphocytes with intracellular but no surface CD3 antigen in five of seven patients consecutively diagnosed with angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma.

Author information

Department of Internal Medicine, Hematology-Oncology, Virchow Hospital, Charite, Humboldt-University, Berlin, Germany.


Angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma (AITL) accounts for less than 1% of all lymphatic malignancies. Oligoclonality or monoclonality for any of the T-cell receptor (TCR) chain genes can be demonstrated in the majority of the cases. During systematic screening for the presence of circulating lymphocytes with atypical coexpression of differentiation antigens in patients with T-cell lymphomas, we have discovered a minor population (accounting for 0.2% to 10.% of all lymphocytes) of atypical lymphocytes in the blood of five of seven patients consecutively diagnosed in 1997/1998 by lymph node histology to have AITL. The major distinguishing feature of these cells consists of the lack of the surface expression of the CD3 antigen, but not of the intracellular expression. These cells express the T-cell antigens CD2 and CD5 on their surface, but not CD7, and they express CD4 and CD45 at numbers of molecules per cell typical for T lymphocytes. Gene scan analyses for the TCR gamma chain revealed oligoclonality of these flow-sorted cells in one patient and monoclonality in two patients, the same patterns of TCR gamma chain gene as determined processing the respective diagnostic lymph nodes. Circulating CD4-expressing T lymphocytes with exclusively cytoplasmic expression of CD3 appear to represent the malignant population in patients with histologically diagnosed AITL.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center