Intravascular lymphomatosis (IL) is an unusual neoplasm characterized by multifocal proliferation of lymphoma cells exclusively within the blood vessels. We report here a patient with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and disseminated Kaposi's sarcoma. A 233-bp amplification product of HHV-8 was detected in the DNA extracted from specimens of Kaposi's sarcoma at different sites by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). At autopsy, the vessels within the Kaposi's sarcoma were dilated and filled with atypical large mononuclear cells. No such feature was seen in the vessels of non-Kaposi's sarcomatous regions. Immunohistochemically, the spindle cells of Kaposi's sarcoma were positive for CD31 (endothelial cell marker). The intravascular tumor cells were positive for CD45 (leukocyte common antigen) but negative for others, including chloroacetate esterase, CD45-RO (UCHL-1, Pan-T), CD3, CD43, CD20 (L26, Pan-B), CD30 (Ki-1), immunoglobulin heavy chains and light chains, CD56 (natural killer cell antigen), and CD31. Monoclonal rearrangement of immunoglobulin heavy chain gene was detected in the DNA extracts from fresh tissue of Kaposi's sarcoma by PCR, which indicated that the lymphoma cells within the Kaposi's sarcoma were of monoclonal B cell origin. In situ hybridization revealed that EBER-1 transcripts were present in the lymphoma cells of IL but not in the spindle cells of Kaposi's sarcoma. To the authors' best knowledge, this is the first instance of IL in an AIDS patient with direct evidence of EBV association.
From the Departments of Pathology (C.-H.H., S.-W.H., S.-F.H., S.-W.H.), Dermatology (C.-F.T.), and Internal Medicine (M.-Y.C.), National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei, and Department of Pathology, National Cheng-Kung University Hospital (I.-J.S.), Tainan, Taiwan.
Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. Cheng-Hsiang Hsiao, Department of Pathology, National Taiwan University Hospital, No 7, Chung-Shan South Road, Taipei, Taiwan.