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J Invest Dermatol. 2007 Aug;127(8):1898-904. Epub 2007 Mar 29.

Differential expression of TRAF1 aids in the distinction of cutaneous CD30-positive lymphoproliferations.

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Department of Dermatology and Allergy, Skin Cancer Center Charité, CBF, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany.


Lymphomatoid papulosis (LyP), primary cutaneous anaplastic large T-cell lymphoma (cALCL), and cutaneous infiltrates of systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (sALCL) are CD30-positive lymphoproliferative disorders of the skin that overlap clinically, histopathologically, immunophenotypically, and genetically but differ considerably in their prognosis. In particular, lesions of LyP regress spontaneously, whereas those of cALCL and sALCL persist and may progress and spread to extracutaneous sites. In contrast to patients with cALCL, LyP patients do not benefit from an aggressive radio- and/or chemotherapeutic approach. We generated a novel tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR)-associated factor 1 (TRAF1) antibody that recognizes a formalin-resistant epitope (Ber-TRAF1A) and investigated the expression of TRAF1, an intracellular component of TNFR signaling, in LyP and ALCL. We could show a strong TRAF1 expression in the tumor cells of most LyP cases (42/49, 84%). In contrast, tumor cells of primary and secondary cALCL revealed TRAF1 expression in only a few cases (3/41, 7%) as shown for sALCL without skin manifestation. The data indicate that TRAF1 expression reliably distinguishes LyP from primary or secondary cALCL. This might be of crucial diagnostic importance and has a strong impact on the treatment decision for patients with cALCL and LyP.

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