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Am J Surg Pathol. 1997 Feb;21(2):242-8.

Lymphoblastic lymphoma expressing natural killer cell phenotype with involvement of the mediastinum and nasal cavity.

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Department of Pathology, Miyazaki Prefectural Nobeoka Hospital, Japan.


Most CD56+ lymphomas display polymorphic and angiocentric/angiodestructive histologic features and are closely related to Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection. We report a 47-year-old Japanese man with CD56+ lymphoma that showed histologic features of lymphoblastic lymphoma with mediastinal and nasal involvement and an aggressive course. A sample specimen showed the histology of lymphoblastic lymphoma with a positive reaction for terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT) but no angiocentric/angiodestructive features. Transmission electron microscopy revealed a few membrane-bound electron-dense granules in their cytoplasm. Immunohistochemically, lymphoma cells exhibited CD56+ cytoplasmic CD3 (cCD3)+ TdT+. A Southern blot analysis showed no integration of EBV and human T-lymphotrophic virus 1 (HTLV-1) and no rearrangement of the T-cell receptors or immunoglobulin heavy chain genes. This unusual lymphoblastic lymphoma exhibiting cCD3 + CD56 + TdT + TCR- is assumed as an immature or progenitor natural killer cell lineage.

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