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Exp Hematol. 2003 Aug;31(8):682-5.

Clinical relevance of CD95 (Fas/Apo-1) on T cells of patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

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Biomedizinisches Forschungszentrum, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Campus Virchow-Klinikum, Berlin, Germany



Apoptosis mediated via CD95 (Fas/Apo-1) is a key regulator for the biology of normal and malignant lymphocytes. Although the function of CD95 on B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia cells (B-CLL cells) has been studied intensively, the clinical importance of CD95 expression on normal T cells in B-CLL has not been clarified. This study aimed to investigate whether expression of CD95 on peripheral blood T cells correlates with clinically relevant parameters of B-CLL disease.


Expression of CD95 (Fas/Apo-1) on peripheral blood T lymphocytes of patients with B-CLL was determined using flow cytometry and was correlated with expression of activation markers, sensitivity to apoptosis by anti-CD95, and clinical data, such as blood count, Binet stage, therapy, progression-free probability, and survival probability.


Differential CD95 expression did not correlate with activation markers or with levels of apoptosis through anti-CD95. However, high levels of CD95 on T cells from B-CLL patients correlated significantly with low lymphocyte doubling time, increased Binet stages, and requirement for chemotherapeutic treatment. Furthermore, increased cell-surface CD95 on T cells was associated with reduced progression-free probability and poorer survival.


CD95 levels on T cells correlate with the clinical course of B-CLL. Prospective studies appear warranted to investigate whether CD95 on T cells has a direct influence on B-CLL disease progression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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