Chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma with trisomy 12 and focal cyclin D1 expression: A potential diagnostic pitfall

Dennis P. O'Malley, Gail H. Vance, Attilio Orazi

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26 Scopus citations


Chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL) and mantle cell lymphoma usually are distinctly different in regard to clinical presentation, morphology, immunophenotype, and molecular/genetic findings. In spite of this, select cases may show overlapping characteristics and represent a diagnostic challenge. Cyclin D1 immunohistochemical staining is usually envisioned as a definitive method for resolving this differential diagnosis, with positivity supporting a diagnosis of mantle cell lymphoma. We report a case involving a 58-year-old man with a diagnosis of CLL/SLL for several years. A lymph node excision was performed after increased adenopathy was noted in the cervical region. The excised lymph node showed typical morphologic findings of CLL/SLL, including the presence of characteristic proliferation centers. Cyclin D1 staining, using 3 different antibodies, was present in scattered prolymphocytes and paraimmunoblasts, mostly within proliferation centers. Fluorescence in situ hybridization and conventional cytogenetics demonstrated trisomy 12 and an absence of t(11;14) in lymph node tissue. Focal cyclin D1 expression by immunohistochemistry in nodal CLL/SLL is quite unusual and is discussed as a potential diagnostic pitfall.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)92-95
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology

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