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Virchows Archiv

, Volume 450, Issue 5, pp 493–502

First Online: 13 March 2007Received: 03 November 2006Revised: 18 December 2006Accepted: 30 December 2006


The recent World Health Organization WHO classification of hematopoietic and lymphoid tissue tumors represents the first worldwide consensus classification of these malignancies. However, the applicability of this classification to a representative number of hepatic lymphomas in liver biopsy specimens has not yet been investigated. The frequency and infiltration pattern of a series of 205 liver biopsies with lymphoma manifestations was analyzed with the aid of immunohistochemical and molecular pathological analyses. Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma DLBCL was by far the most frequent entity, comprising 45% of the cases analyzed. Using a previously published immunohistochemical algorithm, 35% of 80 DLBCL were assigned to a germinal center B-cell-like GCB and 65% to a non-GCB group. Most B-cell lymphoma entities involving the liver revealed a characteristic infiltration pattern. Diagnostically challenging entities were T-cell-rich B-cell lymphomas, anaplastic large cell lymphomas and peripheral T-cell lymphomas, which frequently required additional molecular clonality assessment. Overall, the percentage of T-cell lymphomas in the liver 12% was higher as compared to other extranodal sites except for the skin and the small intestine. This study provides relevant data on the distribution of hepatic lymphomas and demonstrates the applicability of the WHO classification proposing a diagnostic algorithm for liver biopsies.

KeywordsLymphoma Liver Differential diagnosis Immunohistochemistry PCR Christoph Loddenkemper and Thomas Longerich contributed equally to the work.

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Autor: Christoph Loddenkemper - Thomas Longerich - Michael Hummel - Karen Ernestus - Ioannis Anagnostopoulos - Hans-Peter Dienes -


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