International Journal of Hematology

, Volume 109, Issue 6, pp 723–730 | Cite as

Follicular lymphoma suggested to transform into EBV-negative plasmablastic lymphoma

  • Toshiki Yamada
  • Takeshi Hara
  • Naoe Goto
  • Hitoshi Iwata
  • Hisashi TsurumiEmail author
Case Report


Follicular lymphoma (FL) is an indolent lymphoma that often transforms into a high-grade lymphoma, mostly diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. A case of FL suggested to transform into plasmablastic lymphoma is presented. A 59-year-old man was admitted to our hospital because of right lower abdominal pain and vomiting. Computed tomography showed a mass in the ileocecum. Colonoscopy showed a mass with an ulcer in the ascending colon, and surgery was performed. Immunohistochemical staining of the biopsied mass showed infiltrated lymphocytes that were positive for CD38, CD45, CD138, and λ chain, and negative for CD4, CD5, CD8, CD10, CD20, CD56, and κ chain. Flow cytometric analysis of the ascites showed similar results. FISH analyses performed using lymph node biopsy specimens, ascite fluid and pleural effusion fluid identified the presence of an IGH/BCL2 translocation. FL was suggested to transform into PBL. Although the patient received three courses of R-CHOP chemotherapy and salvage chemotherapy, the patient died because of lymphoma progression less than 6 months after the diagnosis of PBL. Transformation of FL to PBL is highly unusual. The lack of a standard treatment for PBL results in the poor outcome of this entity. Novel therapeutic approaches are needed.


Transformation Follicular lymphoma Plasmablastic lymphoma 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that this manuscript has not been financially supported by any institute or group.


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Copyright information

© Japanese Society of Hematology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of HematologyGifu Prefectural General Medical CenterGifuJapan
  2. 2.First Department of Internal MedicineGifu University Graduate School of MedicineGifuJapan
  3. 3.Department of HematologyMatsunami General HospitalHashimaJapan
  4. 4.Division of PathologyGifu Prefectural General Medical CenterGifuJapan

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