Gene expression profile of cytokines and chemokines in microdissected primary Hodgkin and Reed–Sternberg (HRS) cells: high expression of interleukin-11 receptor α

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We microdissected Hodgkin and Reed–Sternberg (HRS) cells from 14 Hodgkin's lymphoma tissue samples (nodular sclerosis=5; mixed cellularity=9), and after isolation and amplification of mRNA, analyzed the expression profile of 140 genes of chemokines, cytokines and their receptors by cDNA microarray methods. We also compared the profile with those of germinal center (GC) cells in reactive lymphadenitis. Unsupervised clustering revealed a relatively homogeneous expression profile in HRS cells. HRS cells tended to express mainly Th2 T cell-associated molecules rather than those of Th1, compared with GC cells. Interleukin-11 receptor α (IL-11Rα), a previously unknown HRS cell-specific gene, was detected in addition to known genes. Immunohistochemical staining confirmed the expression of IL-11Rα at the protein level. In contrast, only few cases were positive for IL-11Rα in B cell lymphoma, diffuse large cell lymphoma and follicular lymphoma. This is the first analysis report of tissue HRS cells with cDNA microarray technique.

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