Lymph node involvement of chronic lymphocytic leukaemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL) is characterised by the diffuse infiltration of small neoplastic lymphocytes, which is accompanied by the presence of proliferation centres (PCs) comprising prolymphocytes and paraimmunoblasts. There is increasing evidence of accumulation of various molecular alterations in the tumour cells of PCs, which may explain why extended PCs are related to a less favourable prognosis. To further characterize PCs, we compared the expression level of EZH2 protein, the overexpression of which has recently been recognized as poor prognostic factor in CLL/SLL, in the PCs and the intervening small cell areas in lymph nodes of 15 patients with CLL/SLL. We also investigated the mutational profile of EZH2 and the expression of its upstream regulators c-Myc, E2F1, pRB and miR-26a. Our results showed a significantly increased expression of EZH2 in the PCs. No EZH2 mutations were detected, however, overexpression of c-Myc, E2F1 and pRb proteins as well as reduced expression of the tumor suppressor miR-26a were demonstrated in the PCs. In summary our findings indicate that EZH2 pathway is significantly upregulated in the PCs of CLL/SLL lymph nodes, providing further evidence for the distinguished biological features of the PCs.
- Proliferation center
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Clinical Biochemistry