Cutaneous CD56+ large T-cell lymphoma associated with high serum concentration of IL-2

Mariusz A. Wasik, Robert Sackstein, Daniela Novick, Janet R. Butmarc, Qian Zhang, Eric C. Vonderheid, Marshall E. Kadin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


We report the case of a patient with a clinically aggressive large cell lymphoma (LCL) which expressed several T-lymphocyte markers and, in addition, CD56 and, to a lesser degree, CD68 antigens. A marked increase in serum concentration of interleukin (IL)-2 was found (490 and 167 pg/0.1 mL in two serum samples collected 6 months apart). This increase in IL-2 appeared unique to this lymphoma because serum concentration of IL-2 was not increased in any of the cases of various types of cutaneous lymphoproliferative disorders tested: mycosis fungoides-related cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL: 28 patients), granulomatous slack-skin syndrome (GS-SS: 1 patient), anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL: 2 patients), subcutaneous gamma/delta T-cell lymphoma (γ/δ-TCL: 1 patient), adult-type leukemia/lymphoma (ATLL: 1 patient), and lymphomatoid papulosis (LyP: 4 patients). Furthermore, the increase in IL-2 serum concentration appeared selective in this CD56+ large- cell lymphoma-hearing patient, because concentration of none of the five other cytokines tested (IL-4, IL-6, IFNγ, GM-CSF, and TNFα) was increased. In contrast, soluble receptors for IL-2 and two of the other cytokines (IL- 6, and TNFα) were markedly increased not only in this patient, but also in most patients with the other cutaneous lymphoproliferative disorders that we examined except for lymphomatoid papulosis. These data indicate that increased IL-2 serum concentration may help to diagnose a unique type of cutaneous CD56(+) large (T-) cell lymphoma and suggest that IL-2 may play a role of an autocrine growth factor for this lymphoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)738-744
Number of pages7
JournalHuman Pathology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • CD56
  • cutaneous
  • IL-2
  • Lymphoma
  • NK-cell
  • serum
  • T cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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