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The Korean Journal of Pathology 1998;32(4): 298-308.
Detection of Minimal Lesion and Identification of Clonality in Malignant Lymphoma.
Young Shin Kim, Chang Suk Kang, Kyun gja Han, Kyo Young Lee, Yong Goo Kim, Won Il Kim, Sang In Shim
Department of Clinical Pathology, Catholic University Medical College, Seoul, Korea.
ABSTRACT
The bone marrow biopsy is an integral part of the staging process in patients with malignant lymphomas. Bone marrow(BM) involvement indicates stage IV disease, but there are always a lot of cases in which clear separation is not possible when based on morphology alone. Additional difficulties are caused by morphologic discordance between the BM and the primary lymphoma. Immunohistochemical stain, mRNA in situ hybridization (ISH) for light chain restriction and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for IgH CDR3 and TCRgamma were performed to find a minimal lesion and the clonality in formalin fixed paraffin embedded tissues of 39 primary lymphomas and corresponding BM biopsy specimens. As a result, nine morphologically negative bone marrows of 18 lymphomas were positive by PCR (Group I). Among the 6 lymphoma cases with morphologically suspicious BM involvement (Group II), one was confirmed to be positive for marrow involvement by both mRNA ISH and PCR and the other four by PCR alone. The positive bone marrows of Group I and II revealed gene rearrangement at the same site as the primary lesion, suggesting the same clonality. Thirteen of 15 lymphomas with morphologically positive BM (Group III) had the same clonality in the primary lymphomas and the BM lesion. Three cases among the Group III with morphologic discordance also revealed the same clonality by PCR. This study shows that a combination of mRNA ISH and PCR in addition to an immunohistochemical stain improves the diagnostic sensitivity in the detection of BM involvement and identification of clonality. Among the three different methods used, PCR is the most sensitive in detecting a minimal lesion.
Key Words: Malignant lymphoma; Minimal lesion; Clonality