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Nature. 1991 Jan 17;349(6306):254-6.

Progression from lymphoid hyperplasia to high-grade malignant lymphoma in mice transgenic for the t(14; 18).

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Missouri 63110.


Follicular lymphoma, the most common human lymphoma, characteristically has a t(14; 18) interchromosomal translocation. It is typically an indolent disease comprised of small resting B cells, but frequently develops into a high-grade lymphoma. The t(14; 18) translocates the Bcl-2 gene, generating a deregulated Bcl-2-immunoglobulin fusion gene. Bcl-2 is a novel inner mitochondrial membrane protein that extends the survival of certain cells by blocking programmed cell death. To determine the oncogenic potential of the t(14; 18) translocation, we produced transgenic mice bearing a Bcl-2-immunoglobulin minigene that structurally mimicked the t(14; 18). An indolent follicular hyperplasia in these transgenic mice progressed to a malignant diffuse large-cell lymphoma. The long latency, progression from polyclonal to monoclonal disease, and histological conversion, are all suggestive of secondary changes. Half of the immunoblastic high-grade lymphomas had a rearranged c-myc gene. Our transgenic mice provide an animal model for tumour progression in t(14; 18) lymphoma and show that prolonged B-cell life increases tumour incidence.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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