Objective: In this study, our aim was to investigate how different immunohistochemical techniques may influence the result of BCL6 positivity and categorization in germinal center (GC) and non-GC derived diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), as it has been proposed that classification of DLBCL according to cell-of-origin by immunohistochemistry may be performed as a routine procedure in the diagnostic work-up. However, a number of technical issues need to be solved before introducing this as a standard technique.
Methods: Tumor specimens from 122 patients with de novo stage II–IV disease, adequately treated with anthracycline-containing chemotherapy regimens were collected. Immunohistochemical expression of BCL6, CD10, and MUM-1/IRF4 was examined using a tissue microarray (TMA) technique. BCL6 and CD10 were also evaluated on whole tissue sections.
Results: Due to profound tissue heterogeneity, BCL6 showed a wide range of positivity, with a high number of false negative results by TMA (25% positive), compared to 53% on whole tissue sections (WTS). CD10 was more homogeneously expressed, and TMA results corresponded better to WTS. Consequently, the results from categorization into GC and non-GC DLBCL differed considerably by use of the two methods, and resulted in very different outcome in terms of overall survival.
Conclusion: Immunohistochemical GC-status determined on TMA is not reliable enough to be used for individual treatment decisions in DLBCL, mostly due to difficulties in interpreting BCL6 status.
2007. Vol. 79, no 2, 146-149 p.