We studied 10 cases of Lennert's lymphoma (lymphoepithelioid lymphoma) to evaluate the cellular origin of the neoplastic cells. There were six men and four women, aged 38 to 75 years (median, 56 yrs; mean, 59 yrs). The lymphoma cells tended to remain confined to lymph nodes, and extranodal involvement was rare. The mean overall survival was 42.2 months, which is relatively good compared with other peripheral T-cell lymphomas. Morphologically, the lymph node was occupied by small to large clusters of epithelioid cells interspersed with medium to large atypical lymphoid cells. In seven cases, large atypical lymphoid cells resembling Hodgkin's or Reed-Sternberg cells were observed. The phenotypes of these neoplastic cells were CD3+ CD4- CD8+ in five cases, CD3+ CD4+ CD8- in four cases, and CD3+ CD4- CD8- in one case. TIA-1 was positive by immunohistochemical staining in seven cases, whereas four cases were positive for granzyme B. Clonal rearrangement of the T-cell receptor gene was confirmed in all cases by either Southern blot hybridization or a polymerase chain reaction-based denature gradient gel electrophoresis method. Epstein-Barr virus was negative by in situ hybridization in all but one case. Lennert's lymphoma was formerly known as a CD4+ helper T-cell neoplasm. Our results suggest that, at least in some cases, the neoplastic cells are of cytotoxic T-cell origin.
From the First Department of Pathology, Nagoya University School of Medicine, Tsuruma-cho 65, Showa-ku, Nagoya, Japan (Y.Y., N.M.); Department of Pathology and Clinical Laboratories (S.N.) and Department of Hematology and Chemotherapy (Y.K.), Aichi Cancer Center Hospital, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya, Japan; and Institute of Clinical Medicine (Y.H., H.K., T.N.), Tsukuba University School of Medicine, Tsukuba, Japan.
Address correspondence and reprint requests to Yoriko Yamashita, MD, First Department of Pathology, Nagoya University School of Medicine, Tsuruma-cho 65, Showa-ku, Nagoya, 466-8550, Japan; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org