Diagnostic difficulties sometimes arise in distinguishing anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) from Hodgkin disease (HD), especially the syncytial variant. Study of the biologic features of diagnostic Reed-Sternberg cells in HD, in search of specific markers for Reed-Sternberg cells, has suggested fascin as a relatively specific and sensitive marker. We studied the frequency of fascin expression in 30 ALCLs and 34 cases of classic HD, including 17 cases of the syncytial variant. Staining with CD30 and anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK)-1 also was performed in all cases. All ALCL and HD cases showed membranous and Golgi zone CD30 positivity. Fascin stained all HD cases but also stained 67% (20/30) of the ALCLs in a cytoplasmic pattern. Fascin positivity was observed in 59% (10/17) of T-cell ALCLs and 77% (10/13) of null-cell ALCLs; ALK-1-positive ALCLs, regardless of origin, were usually fascin-positive (91% [10/11]). In conclusion, fascin shows strong positivity in all cases of classic HD but also is positive in the majority of ALCLs, including ALK-1-positive and ALK-1-negative cases. Positive staining for fascin is not useful for distinguishing ALCL from HD. In some cases, fascin negativity may help rule out classic HD.
- Anaplastic large cell lymphoma
- Anaplastic lymphoma kinase 1
- Hodgkin disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine