Striking Association of Lymphoid Enhancing Factor (LEF1) Overexpression and DUSP22 Rearrangements in Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma

Aishwarya Ravindran, Andrew L. Feldman, Rhett P. Ketterling, Surendra Dasari, Karen L. Rech, Ellen D. McPhail, Paul J. Kurtin, Min Shi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Anaplastic large cell lymphomas (ALCLs) are broadly classified into ALK-positive and ALK-negative. ALK-negative ALCL is composed of DUSP22-rearranged, TP63-rearranged, and triple-negative cases. While lymphoid enhancer-binding factor (LEF1) plays a crucial role in T-cell maturation, limited data exist on its expression in T-cell lymphomas, including ALCL. We characterized the expression of LEF1 in ALCL by immunohistochemistry. LEF1 nuclear expression in the neoplastic cells was graded as negative (0), weak (1+), intermediate (2+), or strong (3+), with the percentage of LEF1-positive neoplastic cells recorded. A total of 45 ALCL cases were evaluated, of which 16 were DUSP22-rearranged. About 93.8% (15/16) DUSP22-rearranged cases showed strong expression of LEF1 in >75% tumor cells, compared with 3.4% (1/29) non-DUSP22-rearranged ALCL (P<0.0001). The striking association of LEF1 protein overexpression with DUPS22 rearrangement in ALCL was further confirmed by a gene expression profiling study which revealed significantly higher LEF1 expression in DUSP22-rearranged ALCL compared with other ALCL subtypes (P=0.0001). Although LEF1 is a nuclear mediator of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway, CTNNB1 RNA and protein levels were not overexpressed in LEF1-positive cases, suggesting the LEF1 overexpression in ALCL may not be involved in the Wnt/β-catenin pathway. The strong and uniform LEF1 expression pattern has a high positive predictive value (93.8%) and high negative predictive value (96%) for DUSP22 rearrangement in ALK-negative ALCL. The combination of characteristic morphologic and molecular features of DUSP22-rearranged cases with the high LEF1 expression further emphasizes that DUSP22-rearranged ALCL represents a distinct clinicopathologic subset of ALCL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)550-557
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • ALCL
  • DUSP22
  • LEF1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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