Precursor B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma: A study of nine cases lacking blood and bone marrow involvement and review of the literature

Anirban Maitra, Robert W. McKenna, Arthur G. Weinberg, Nancy R. Schneider, Steven H. Kroft

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127 Scopus citations


We describe 9 cases of precursor B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma (LYL) without evidence of marrow or blood involvement. Four patients had superficial nodal disease, 2 cutaneous involvement, and 1 each ovarian, retroperitoneal, or tonsillar primary tumor. Six patients had limited disease; 3 patients were stage III. Immunophenotyping revealed a terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT)-positive, immature B-cell population with variable expression of CD10, CD20, and CD45. All patients are in complete clinical remission (median follow-up, 14 months). A literature review yielded 105 patients with a diagnosis of precursor B-cell LYL based on less than 25% marrow involvement. Of these, 64% were younger than 18 years. Skin, lymph nodes, and bone were the most common sites of disease. Mediastinal involvement was uncommon. TdT, CDI9, CD79a, CD10, and HLA-DR were the most frequently expressed antigens, while CD45 and CD20 were expressed in only two thirds of the cases. Cytogenetic analysis showed additional 21q material as a recurring karyotypic abnormality. At a median follow-up of 26 months, 74% of patients were alive; the median survival was 19 months for patients dying of disease. Comparison with precursor B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia showed several overlapping features, although distinct differences were identified.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)868-875
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of clinical pathology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 6 2001



  • Acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • Lymphoblastic lymphoma
  • Precursor B-cell lymphoma, Precursor B-cell ALL

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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