Germinal-Center T-Helper-Cell Markers PD-1 and CXCL13 Are Both Expressed by Neoplastic Cells in Angioimmunoblastic T-Cell Lymphoma

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Abstract

Gene expression profiling identified genes uniquely expressed by human germinal-center T-helper (GCTh) cells, including programmed death-1 (PD-1) and CXCL13. Recently, we demonstrated that PD-1 is an immunophenotypic marker of GCTh cells and angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma (AITL). The goal of this study was to investigate the expression pattern of CXCL13 in comparison with PD-1. We studied 63 cases of T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders, including 22 cases of AITL. In cases of AITL, PD-1+ and CXCL13+ neoplastic cells were seen at foci of expanded CD21+ follicular dendritic cell networks. CXCL13 expression was limited in other peripheral T-cell lymphomas. PD-1 and CXCL13 identified germinal-center T-helper cells, showed a similar pattern of expression in AITL, and should serve as useful new markers for AITL. The similar pattern of expression of CXCL13 and PD-1 in AITL provides further evidence that AITL is a neoplasm derived from germinal-center T-helper cells.

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