AIDS and non-AIDS diffuse large B-cell lymphomas express different antigen profiles

Rashna Madan, Robert Gormley, Alina Dulau, Dongsheng Xu, Daniel Walsh, K. H. Ramesh, Linda Cannizaro, Ecaterina F. Tamas, Pankaj Kumar, Joseph Sparano, Aaron LeValley, Xiaonan Xue, Pritish K. Bhattacharyya, Harry L. Ioachim, Howard Ratech

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


Based on gene expression profiling, diffuse large B-cell lymphomas arising in immunocompetent patients can be divided into germinal center and activated B-cell types. Since little is known about acquired immunodeficiency syndrome associated diffuse large B-cell lymphomas, we tested whether the protein expression of germinal center and activated B-cell markers differed between acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) vs non-AIDS diffuse large B-cell lymphomas. We immunohistochemically stained tissue microarrays of 39 de novo diffuse large B-cell lymphomas: 12 AIDS associated and 27 non-AIDS, with germinal center (BCL6, CD10, CyclinH) and activated B-cell markers (MUM1, CD138, PAK1, CD44, BCL2). We scored each case for percent positive cells (0-19% = 0; 20-49% = 1; 50-100% = 2). The activated B-cell and germinal center summation scores of each case were used as (x, y) coordinate data points to construct two-dimensional contour-frequency plots. The contour plot of non-AIDS diffuse large B-cell lymphomas showed two distinct clusters: a cluster with a high germinal center phenotype (cluster 1) and a cluster with a high activated B-cell phenotype (cluster 3). In contrast, the AIDS-related diffuse large B-cell lymphomas formed a single aggregate (cluster 2) (P = 0.02, Fisher exact test). When the contour plots of the AIDS-related and the non-AIDS cases were superimposed, cluster 2 of the AIDS cases expressed an intermediate germinal center/activated B-cell phenotype compared to clusters 1 and 3 of the non-AIDS diffuse large B-cell lymphomas. Our results confirm that non-AIDS diffuse large B-cell lymphomas segregate into two groups with either germinal center or activated B-cell phenotype. We report the new finding that the AIDS status of the patient predicts the immunophenotype of the diffuse large B-cell lymphomas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-446
Number of pages9
JournalModern Pathology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2006



  • AIDS
  • Activated B-cell
  • Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
  • Gene expression
  • Germinal center
  • Immunophenotype

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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