Original articles

Tryptase- and chymase-positive mast cells as possible prognostic factor in patients with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Barbara Rygoł, Sławomira Kyrcz-Krzemień, Jacek Pająk, Piotr Konicki, Elżbieta Kowal, Teresa Gasińska
Published online: January 01, 2007


Objectives: Aim of the study was to reveal potential prognostic factors in Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL) patients by means of assessment of the influence of mast cells on clinical characteristics of the disease.

Patients and methods: Paraffin-fixed lymph node biopsies taken from the group of 72 patients treated for Hodgkin’s lymphoma in the Department of Internal Medicine and Oncological Chemotherapy of Silesian Medical Academy in Katowice from 1990 to 2002. The analyzed group consisted of 44 men (age 16-73, mean 39.2) and 28 women (age 15-73, mean 36.5) presenting with 5 histological types of HL according to WHO classification. Overall survival (OS) for the group ranged from 3 to 169 month (mean 64.5) while disease-free survival (DFS) was from 4 to 167 months (mean 44.8). Tryptase and chymase-positive mast cell density was assessed in order to correlate it with histological type, staging, sex and age of patients. Tissue specimens were immunohistochemically stained for mast cell tryptase and counted at 200x magnification. Tryptase-positive mast cell density (MCD-T) was assessed in 10 randomly selected fields and the score was averaged.

Results: The highest density of MCD-T and MCD-C was observed in NS type while the lowest characterized LD. A statistically significant difference in MCD-T was noted between NS and LD (p=0.0002). Despite the fact that increased density of MCD-T and MCD-T was observed in stage III and the lowest in stage IV of the disease, no correlation was found between MCD and stage, sex or age. Overall survival was assessed in correlation with histological type and showed to be longest in MC and worst in NS type.

Conclusions: Tryptase and chymase-positive mast cell density is related to histological type of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Increased mast cell density correlates with worse prognosis in patients with HL.

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