Lymphomas arising in immune-privileged sites: insights into biology, diagnosis, and pathogenesis

Rebecca L. King, John R. Goodlad, Maria Calaminici, Snjezana Dotlic, Santiago Montes-Moreno, Ilske Oschlies, Maurilio Ponzoni, Alexandra Traverse-Glehen, German Ott, Judith A. Ferry

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Session 2 of the 2018 European Association of Hematopathology/Society for Hematopathology Workshop focused on lymphomas arising in immune-privileged sites: both lymphomas arising in the traditionally described “immune sanctuary” sites of the central nervous system (CNS) and testes, as well as those arising at sites of local immune privilege. Primary CNS large B cell lymphoma and primary testicular large B cell lymphoma were discussed, and the biology of these unique tumors was highlighted by several cases showing the classic mutation profile including MYD88 L265P and CD79B. The tendency of these tumors to involve both the CNS and testis was also reinforced by several cases. Four cases of low-grade B cell lymphomas (LGBCL) of the CNS were discussed. Two were classic Bing-Neel syndrome associated with LPL, and two were LGBCL with plasmacytic differentiation and amyloid deposition without systemic disease. Rare examples of systemic T and NK cell lymphomas involving the CNS were also discussed. Several cases of breast implant–associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma (BI-ALCL) were submitted showing the typical clinicopathologic features. These cases were discussed along with a case with analogous features arising in a patient with a gastric band implant, as well as large B cell lymphomas arising alongside foreign materials. Finally, large B cell lymphomas arising in effusions or localized sites of chronic inflammation (fibrin-associated diffuse large B cell lymphoma [DLBCL] and DLBCL associated with chronic inflammation) were described. The pathogenesis of all of these lymphomas is believed to be related to decreased immune surveillance, either innate to the physiology of the organ or acquired at a local site.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)647-665
Number of pages19
JournalVirchows Archiv
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2020


  • Breast implant–associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma
  • Central nervous system lymphoma
  • Diffuse large B cell lymphoma associated with chronic inflammation
  • Fibrin-associated diffuse large B cell lymphoma
  • Immune privilege
  • Testicular lymphoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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