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Pathol Int. 2004 Mar;54(3):158-66.

High frequency of EBV association and 30-bp deletion in the LMP-1 gene in CD56 lymphomas of the upper aerodigestive tract.

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Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


Natural killer (NK)/T-cell lymphomas are frequently associated with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), and usually lack TCR gene rearrangement. Studies from Asia have reported frequent deletion in the LMP-1 gene in EBV-associated nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). The present study aims to investigate LMP-1 and TCRgamma gene status in upper aerodigestive tract lymphomas. A total of 43 cases were classified into T-, B-, and NK/T-cell tumors based on the phenotype expressions of CD3(+)/CD20(-)/CD56(-), CD3(-)/CD20(+)/CD56(-), and CD3(+)/CD20(-)/CD56(+), respectively. The presence of EBV in the tumor was confirmed by EBV early RNA-in situ hybridization. LMP-1 gene deletion and TCR gamma gene rearrangement were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction on paraffin-embedded tissues. There were 20 NK/T-, eight T-, and 15 B-cell phenotype lymphomas in the present series, and EBV was detected in 19 (95%), two (25%), and three (20%) cases in the respective groups. All EBV+ cases carried 30-bp deletion in the LMP-1 gene, and two of the NK/T-cell cases were infected by both the wild type and deleted strains. Five (25%) of the NK/T-cell phenotype lymphomas showed rearranged TCR gamma gene. The present study revealed a high frequency of EBV association, and a high frequency of 30-bp deletion in the LMP-1 gene in the virus in the present series of lymphoma. The NK/T-phenotype lymphomas are comprised of both NK-cell and cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-derived tumors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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