The development of gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma is a multistep process and can be clinico-pathologically divided into Helicobacter pylori-associated gastritis, low-grade tumors, and high-grade tumors. The molecular events underlying this progression are largely unknown. However, identification of the genes involved in MALT lymphoma-specific t(11;18)(q21; q21) and t(1;14)(p22;q32) has provided fresh insights into the pathogenesis of this disease. T(11;18)(q21;q21) results in a chimeric transcript between the API2 and the MALT1 genes, whereas t(1;14) (p22;q32) causes aberrant nuclear BCL10 expression. Significantly, nuclear BCL10 expression also occurs frequently in MALT lymphomas without t(1;14)(p22; q32), suggesting an important role for BCL10 in lymphoma development. Thirty-three cases of H pylori gastritis, 72 MALT lymphomas, and 11 mucosal diffuse large B-cell lymphomas (DLBCL) were screened for t(11;18)(q21) by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction followed by sequencing. BCL10 expression in lymphoma cases was examined by immunohistochemistry. The API2-MALT1 fusion transcript was not detected in H pylori gastritis and mucosal DLBCL but was found in 25 of 72 (35%) MALT lymphomas of various sites. Nuclear BCL10 expression was seen in 28 of 53 (53%) of MALT lymphomas. Of the gastric cases, the largest group studied, the frequency of both t(11;18)(q21;q21) and nuclear BCL10 expression was significantly higher in tumors that showed dissemination to local lymph nodes or distal sites (14 of 18 = 78% and 14 of 15 = 93%, respectively) than those confined to the stomach (3 of 29 = 10% and 10 of 26 = 38%). Furthermore, t(11;18)(q21;q21) closely correlated with BCL10 nuclear expression. These results indicate that both t(11;18)(q21;q21) and BCL10 nuclear expression are associated with advanced MALT lymphoma and that their oncogenic activities may be related to each other.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology