Methotrexate (MTX) is known as a first-line synthetic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Although the risk of LPD development increases by RA inflammation itself, observation of spontaneous regression of LPD after MTX discontinuation lead to the theory of lymphomagenic role of MTX. In this review, we focused on the several immune response involved in LPD that developed under MTX administration in RA patients.
As opportunistic infections among human T-lymphotrophic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) carriers and patients with adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) pose a serious problem, it is necessary to clarify their clinical characteristics and outcomes in these patients. We retrospectively analyzed the clinical features and outcomes of opportunistic infections in 127 HTLV-1 carriers and 153 ATL patients between 2006 and 2016. The cumulative incidence rates of opportunistic infections among HTLV-1 carriers and ATL patients were 1.5% (2/127) and 6.5% (10/153), respectively. The etiology of opportunistic infections was as follows: fungal infections (3 cases), pneumocystis pneumonia, and cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections. Even after aggressive treatment, the prognosis of opportunistic infections was poor (50% of overall survival at 28 days). Regarding prognostic factors affecting the OS of opportunistic infections, higher SOFA scores (especially the respiratory subscore) and higher LDH values were identified by univariate analysis. Moreover, 3 out of 6 patients achieved spontaneous remission of ATL as the short-term outcome after the development of opportunistic infection. However, 5 out of 6 surviving patients exhibited ATL progression or relapse after a median of 194 days (133–226) after contracting an opportunistic infection as the long-term outcome of ATL. In conclusion, opportunistic infections should be carefully followed among HTLV-1 carriers and ATL patients because of their aggressive clinical course and poor outcomes. Furthermore, early diagnosis and subsequent prompt treatment are necessary in clinical practice.
Primary intraocular lymphomas frequently develop into central nervous system lymphomas and vice versa. This study reviewed 22 consecutive patients with primary intraocular lymphoma diagnosed by immunostaining of vitrectomy cell blocks, and examined whether they developed central nervous system lymphoma. Seventeen patients developed central nervous system lymphoma: 3 patients developed intraocular and central nervous system lymphoma simultaneously, 9 patients developed central nervous system lymphoma 1 month to 5 years (median, 3 months) after intraocular lymphoma, and 5 patients developed central nervous system lymphoma preceding the diagnosis of intraocular lymphoma by 3 months to 9 years and 8 months (median, 1.5 years). In contrast, 5 patients did not develop central nervous system lymphoma: 2 patients did not develop local recurrence or central nervous system lymphoma in the follow-up period of 5 years and 11 years, respectively, after vitrectomy alone without additional local or systemic treatment. The remaining 3 patients with intraocular lymphoma had insufficient follow-up periods to determine the prognosis. The results of CD5 immunostaining of vitrectomy specimens were found in pathology reports of 8 patients: 3 patients with CD5-positive large cells and 4 patients with CD5-negative large cells developed central nervous system lymphoma. In summary, only a small number of patients did not develop central nervous system lymphoma based on long-term follow-up after vitrectomy alone. CD5 was not a marker of central nervous system involvement in this study population.
Castleman disease is a polyclonal lymphoproliferative disease which is clinically classified into unicentric (UCD) and multicentric (MCD). TAFRO syndrome is a relatively new concept that partly overlaps with MCD. Due to their rarity, their incidence remains unknown. This study investigated the incidence and prevalence of UCD, MCD, and TAFRO syndrome in Japan using a fixed-point observation method based on their incidence in Ishikawa prefecture. The annual incidences of MCD, UCD, and TAFRO syndrome in Japan were 309-731, 71-542, and 110-502, respectively, yielding annual incidence rates per million individuals of 2.4-5.8, 0.6-4.3, and 0.9-4.9, respectively, and nationwide prevalence of 4,180-14,900, 1,350-10,300, and 860-7,240, respectively. In conclusion, MCD, UCD and TAFRO syndrome may not be as rare as previously estimated in Japan.
This phase I study evaluated the safety and efficacy of single-agent ibrutinib in Japanese patients with treatment-naïve chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)/small lymphocytic lymphoma (aged 20-69 years and ineligible for chemotherapy using fludarabine or cyclophosphamide, or aged ≥70 years). Eight patients received oral ibrutinib 420 mg once daily until progressive disease or unacceptable toxicity. The primary endpoint was safety; secondary endpoints included the overall response rate (ORR). At the time of final analysis (August 22, 2018), eight patients (all with CLL; median age, 68.5 years) had received ibrutinib for a median of 32.2 months (range, 10.4-35.9); all patients had discontinued study treatment, with 50.0% of patients switching to marketing-approved ibrutinib as subsequent anticancer therapy. All patients had ≥1 adverse event (AE); the most common AEs included a decreased platelet count, upper respiratory tract infection, increased lymphocyte count, diarrhea, nasopharyngitis, peripheral edema and rash. Four patients (50.0%) had a total of eight grade ≥3 AEs, most commonly lung infection and decreased neutrophil count. Eight serious AEs were reported in four patients (50.0%); these included a case of muscle hemorrhage (grade 3), decreased neutrophil count (grade 4) that led to dose reduction and one case of fatal cardiac arrest. The ORR was 87.5% (7/8 patients [exact 95% confidence interval 47.3-99.7]). One patient had a complete response, six had a partial response and one had a partial response with lymphocytosis. Ibrutinib had an acceptable safety profile and high ORR in Japanese patients with treatment-naïve CLL.
The antigenic heterogeneity of the reticular framework of the white pulp and marginal zone is well documented in the human adult spleen. Immunostaining of α-smooth muscle actin characterizes the heterogeneity of the reticular framework of the white pulp and marginal zone. In the human spleen, the blood cells flow in an open circulation. T and B lymphocytes flow out from the arterial terminal, and migrate in the reticular framework. Homing of lymphocytes to lymphoid tissues is regulated by selective interactions between cell surface homing receptors and tissue vascular addressins at sites of lymphocyte recruitment from the blood. In the present study, mucosal addressin cell adhesion molecule-1 was selectively expressed on α-smooth muscle actin-positive reticular framework. The reticular framework may function in lymphocyte homing and segregation into the periarteriolar lymphoid sheath, lymph follicle and marginal zone.
Gamma heavy chain disease (γ-HCD) is a rare B-cell neoplasm that produces a truncated immunoglobulin γ-heavy chain lacking the light chain. The clinical features of γ-HCD are heterogeneous, resembling different types of B-cell lymphomas. Although rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is one of the common underlying diseases of γ-HCD, the therapeutic modality for RA has changed greatly in recent years; therefore, γ-HCD as iatrogenic immunodeficiency-associated lymphoproliferative disorder (LPD) should be taken into consideration. Here, we report such a γ-HCD case. A 69-year-old female was admitted because of fever, multiple lymph node swelling in the abdominal cavity, and peritoneal effusion. She had been treated using methotrexate for RA for 14 years, and using infliximab and adalimumab for Crohn’s disease for one year. The serum concentration of IgG was 3,525 mg/dL, which was revealed to be monoclonal IgG lacking the light chain by rocket immunoselection assay. CD19+/CD20-/smκ−/smλ− large abnormal lymphocytes were observed in the peritoneal fluid, which were demonstrated to be clonal B-cells by PCR examination. Discontinuation of methotrexate did not improve her condition and she died of pneumonia. Many abnormal lymphocytes positive for IgG and EBER but negative for the light chain were found on immunohistological examination of necropsy specimens from the spleen and bone marrow.
CD3+/CD57+ T-cell large granular lymphocyte leukemia (T-LGLL) is an indolent neoplasm, exhibiting mostly CD8+, less frequently CD4+ phenotypes, and T-LGLL consisting of 2 populations with CD8+ and CD4+ phenotypes is markedly rare. An 87-year-old female was admitted under a diagnosis of immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) with a platelet count of 5.0×109/L and increased number of LGL with unknown etiology. Her neutrophil count also decreased to 0.27×109/L and she was positive for antineutrophil antibody. The WBC count was 2.7×109/L with 34.7% LGL and flow cytometry (FCM) analysis revealed 16% CD3+/CD4+/CD8dim/CD57+ and 20.9% CD3+/CD8+/CD57+ populations. These populations also expressed granzyme B and perforin. Circulating mononuclear cells were found to be clonal by PCR analysis of T-cell receptor β-chain gene. Serum immunofixation and bone marrow FCM analyses demonstrated 2 clonal B-cells producing IgG-λ and IgA-λ. Deep amplicon sequencing of STAT3 and STAT5B genes revealed a STAT3 R302G mutation with an allele burden of 2.6%. The thrombocytopenia and neutropenia were successfully treated by prednisolone and romiplostim with negative conversion of antineutrophil antibody. This is the first reported case of T-LGLL with dual components of CD4+/CD8dim and CD4-/CD8+ populations in terms of multiple comorbidities related to the respective CD8+ and CD4+ T-LGLLs.