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Ann Hematol. 2019 May;98(5):1197-1207. doi: 10.1007/s00277-019-03628-8. Epub 2019 Feb 7.

Clinicopathological features of HCV-positive splenic diffuse large B cell lymphoma.

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Department of Pathology, Kurume University, School of Medicine, Asahimachi 67, Kurume, Fukuoka, 830-0011, Japan.
Department of Hematology, Hokkaido University Faculty of Medicine, Sapporo, Japan.
Department of Pathology, Kurume University, School of Medicine, Asahimachi 67, Kurume, Fukuoka, 830-0011, Japan.
Department of Medicine and Biosystemic Science, Kyushu University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Fukuoka, Japan.
Department of Hematology, Hamanomachi Hospital, Fukuoka, Japan.
Department of Hematology, Kushiro Rosai Hospital, Kushiro, Japan.
Department of Hematology, Kurume University, School of Medicine, Kurume, Japan.


The hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a single-stranded RNA virus which is thought to be involved in the onset of B cell lymphoma. HCV-positive diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) has been reported to clinically manifest in extranodal lesions (e.g., in the liver, spleen, and stomach). Here, we investigated HCV-positive and -negative primary splenic DLBCL (p-spDLBCL) and non-primary splenic DLBCL (ordinary DLBCL). Furthermore, to examine HCV lymphomagenesis, RNA in situ hybridization (ISH), RT-PCR (reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction), and NS3 immunostaining of HCV viral nonstructural proteins were performed. HCV-positive p-spDLBCL patients presented fewer B symptoms (asymptomatic) and better performance status, with elevated presence of splenic macronodular lesions and more germinal center B cell (GCB) sub-group cases than HCV-negative p-spDLBCL patients. However, HCV-positive ordinary DLBCL patients were found to have more non-GCB sub-group cases than HCV-negative ordinary DLBCL patients. HCV-positive DLBCL patients showed 20.6% (7/34) NS3 positivity, 16.7% (1/6) HCV-RNA in situ positivity, and 22.2% (2/9) detection of HCV-RNA in tumor tissue by RT-PCR. Splenic samples were found to have a higher frequency of HCV detection than lymph node samples, thus suggesting that HCV may be closely related to lymphomagenesis, especially in splenic lymphoma.


Hepatitis C virus; Malignant lymphoma; NS3; Primary splenic DLBCL; RNA in situ hybridization

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