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Abstract

Peripheral T-cell lymphomas consist of a clinically heterogeneous group of malignant disorders whose immunophenotype usually corresponds to that of normal mature T cells. We describe and correlate the clinical, histopathologic, phenotypic, and genotypic findings in two patients with malignant lymphoma presenting with hepatosplenic disease. The morphologic pattern of lymphoma was that of a sinusal/sinusoidal infiltration in spleen, marrow, and liver. This morphologic characteristic was associated with the presence of a productive clonal rearrangement of the T-cell receptor (TCR) delta gene. Lymphoma cells expressed a CD3-TCR-gamma delta- phenotype. They were also double negative (ie, CD4-CD8-) and lacked the CD5 and CD7 antigens. In one patient, tumor progression was associated with phenotypic changes that resulted in a CD3-TCR-gamma delta- phenotype with the same delta-gene rearrangement as initially. These observations suggest the existence of a new type of peripheral T-cell lymphoma characterized by its hepatosplenic presentation, and by the sinusal/sinusoidal tropism and the TCR-gamma delta phenotype of the malignant cells.