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J Clin Oncol. 2005 Apr 1;23(10):2233-9.

Primary CNS lymphoma of T-cell origin: a descriptive analysis from the international primary CNS lymphoma collaborative group.

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  • 1British Columbia Cancer Agency, 600 W 10th Ave, Vancouver, BC, V5Z 4E6, Canada.



To describe the demographic and tumor related characteristics and outcomes for patients with primary T-cell CNS lymphoma (TPCNSL).


A retrospective series of patients with TPCNSL was compiled from twelve cancer centers in seven countries.


We identified 45 patients with a median age of 60 years (range, 3 to 84 years). Twenty (44%) had Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status (PS) of 0 or 1. Twenty-six (58%) had involvement of a cerebral hemisphere and sixteen (36%) had lesions of deeper sites in the brain. Serum lactate dehydrogenase was elevated in 7 (32%) of 22 patients, and CSF protein was elevated in 19 of 24 patients (79%) with available data. The median disease-specific survival (DSS) was 25 months (95% CI, 11 to 38 months). The 2- and 5-year DSS were 51% (95% CI, 35% to 66%) and 17% (95% CI, 6% to 34%), respectively. Univariate and multivariate analyses were conducted for age (</= 60 v > 60 years), PS (0 or 1 v 2, 3, or 4), involvement of deep structures of the CNS (no v yes), and methotrexate (MTX) use in the primary treatment (yes v no). Only PS and MTX use were significantly associated with better outcome with hazard ratios of 0.2 (95% CI, 0.1 to 0.4) and 0.4 (95% CI, 0.2 to 0.8), respectively.


This is the largest series ever assembled of TPCNSL. The presentation and outcome appear similar to that of B cell PCNSL. PS 0 or 1 and administration of MTX are associated with better survival.

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