In this study the authors attempted to establish immunopathologic criteria for the distinction of various T-cell lymphomas affecting the skin. We studied skin specimens from 27 patients with mycosis fungoides (MF) (n = 12), the Sezary syndrome (SS) (n = 6), adult T-cell leukemia (ATL) (n = 4), and nonepidermotropic T-cell lymphoma of large cell (n = 4) and lymphoblastic (n = 1) types. Identification of tumor cells in mixed cell populations and detection of weak expression of surface antigens by tumor cells was facilitated by immunoelectron microscopy. The mature helper T-cell phenotype (T11+ T3+ T4+) was found in 14 of 18 cases of MF/SS. One case of MF had a cytotoxic/suppressor (T4- T8+ 3A1+) phenotype; one with frequent blastic cells showed only weak expression of T4 antigen; 2 cases of SS were T11-. Tumor cells infiltrating the skin expressed 3Al antigen in 44% and cellular activation antigens Ia and/or Tac in 78% of patients with MF/SS. No consistent phenotypic differences were found between ATL cells from ATLV (HTLV) antibody-positive patients and tumor cells of patients with MF/SS who lacked this antibody. In contrast, a group of nonepidermotropic T-cell lymphomas showed phenotypic differences from MF/SS and ATL in all but 1 case. These cases were distinguished by the frequent absence of T3, T4, and Leu 1 antigens in 3 large-cell lymphomas; frequent expression of Ki-1 antigen, a Hodgkin's disease-associated antigen, in 2 cases with RS-like cells; and an immature thymocyte phenotype in lymphoblastic lymphoma. These findings demonstrate that tumor-cell phenotypes can be useful in distinguishing different histologic types of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||12|
|Journal||American Journal of Pathology|
|State||Published - 1985|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine