Ectopic lymphoid structures in primary cutaneous melanoma
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Ectopic lymphoid structures have been described in several tumor types including metastatic lesions, but not primary tumors, of patients with melanoma. Here we present evidence of B-cell follicles in primary cutaneous melanomas, being present in 39 of 147 cases (27 %). B-cell clusters were associated with T lymphocytes, most of which belonging to CD45RO+ memory T cells. A network of CD21+ follicular dendritic cells was demonstrated in 8 of 22 cases studied (36 %). MECA-79+ HEV-like venules were observed in the neighborhood of the follicles in the majority of cases, however, their presence was not confined to tumors hosting ectopic lymphoid structures. The appearance of B-cell aggregates did not show association with the outcome of the disease, although a trend for their higher prevalence was observed in thicker tumors. Our results show that neogenesis of lymphoid structures does occur in primary melanomas, albeit with lower frequency compared to that reported in metastases.
KeywordsEctopic lymphoid structures Primary melanoma B cells T cells Follicular dendritic cells High endothelial venules
The authors thank K. Derecskei and M. Kónya (National Institute of Oncology, Budapest) for technical assistance. The study was supported by the National Scientific Research Fund OTKA 72836 and 105132.
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