Analysis of primary central nervous system large B-cell lymphoma in the era of high-grade B-cell lymphoma: Detection of two cases with MYC and BCL6 rearrangements in a cohort of 12 cases


Ann Diagn Pathol. 2020 Aug 25;48:151610. doi: 10.1016/j.anndiagpath.2020.151610. Online ahead of print.


High-grade diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (HG-DLBCL) refers to DLBCL with MYC and BCL2 and/or BCL6 rearrangements (double-hit or triple-hit DLBCL) that exhibits poor prognosis. Double-expressor DLBCL (c-myc+/bcl-2+) has intermediate prognosis when compared to HG-DLBCL. Primary central nervous system lymphoma (PCNSL) has distinct pathophysiology (frequent non-germinal center-like subtype and double-expressor) and has worse prognosis than systemic DLBCL. By fluorescence in situ hybridization

(FISH), 25-30% of PCNSLs harbor BCL6 abnormalities with rare alterations in MYC, BCL2, double-hit or triple-hit events. We describe the clinicopathologic features and status of MYC, BCL2 and BCL6 in 12 PCNSLs (7 women, 5 men; median age 63 years; range: 28-79). Six cases showed focal starry-sky pattern. Immunohistochemically, all (100%) were of non-germinal center-like subtype, and 8/10 (80%) cases were double-expressors. Ki-67 ranged from 70 to 100%. FISH was positive in 9/12 (75%) cases: 4 (33%) harbored a BCL6 rearrangement, 3 (25%) had a gain of BCL2, 2 (17%) cases each had a gain of BCL6 and gain of IGH, and gain of MYC and deletion of MYC were observed in 1 case each (8%). Two (16%) cases were MYC/BCL6 double-hit PCNSLs. No MYC/BCL2 or triple-hit cases were identified. Eleven (92%) patients received chemotherapy and one also received whole brain radiation. The median time of follow-up was 4.4 months (range, 0.3-40.3). Seven (58%) patients are alive, 4 (33%) have died, and 1 (8%) had no follow-up. Five alive patients are in remission, including one MYC/BCL6 double-hit PCNSL. Our results add two new cases of rare double-hit PCNSL to the literature.