Department of Pathology
Diagnosis | Hematology | Hemic and Lymphatic Diseases | Neoplasms | Oncology | Pathological Conditions, Signs and Symptoms | Pathology
Gray zone lymphoma (GZL) is described as sharing features with classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL) and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). However, there remains complexity in establishing diagnosis, delineating prognosis, and determining optimum therapy. Sixty-eight cases diagnosed as GZL across 15 North American academic centers were evaluated by central pathology review to achieve consensus. Of these, only 26 (38%) were confirmed as GZL. Morphology was critical to GZL consensus diagnosis (eg, tumor cell richness); immunohistochemistry showed universal B-cell derivation, frequent CD30 expression, and rare Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) positivity (CD20(+), 83%; PAX5(+), 100%; BCL6(+), 20%; MUM1(+), 100%; CD30(+), 92%; EBV(+), 4%). Forty-two cases were reclassified: nodular sclerosis (NS) cHL, n = 27 (including n = 10 NS grade 2); lymphocyte predominant HL, n = 4; DLBCL, n = 4; EBV(+) DLBCL, n = 3; primary mediastinal large BCL n = 2; lymphocyte-rich cHL and BCL-not otherwise specified, n = 1 each. GZL consensus-confirmed vs reclassified cases, respectively, more often had mediastinal disease (69% vs 41%; P = .038) and less likely more than 1 extranodal site (0% vs 25%; P = .019). With a 44-month median follow-up, 3-year progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival for patients with confirmed GZL were 39% and 95%, respectively, vs 58% and 85%, respectively, for reclassified cases (P = .19 and P = .15, respectively). Interestingly, NS grade 2 reclassified patients had similar PFS as GZL consensus-confirmed cases. For prognostication of GZL cases, hypoalbuminemia was a negative factor (3-year PFS, 12% vs 64%; P = .01), whereas frontline cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone +/- rituximab (CHOP+/-R) was associated with improved 3-year PFS (70% vs 20%; P = .03); both factors remained significant on multivariate analysis. Altogether, accurate diagnosis of GZL remains challenging, and improved therapeutic strategies are needed.
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DOI of Published Version
Blood Adv. 2017 Dec 11;1(26):2600-2609. doi: 10.1182/bloodadvances.2017009472. eCollection 2017 Dec 12. Link to article on publisher's site
Pilichowska, Monika; Woda, Bruce A.; Jaffe, Elaine S.; and Evens, Andrew M., "Clinicopathologic consensus study of gray zone lymphoma with features intermediate between DLBCL and classical HL" (2017). Open Access Articles. 3322.