Forkhead box P3 (FOXP3) is a specific marker for regulatory T-cells (Tregs). We report 6 cases of T-cell lymphomas with Treg phenotype based on diffuse positivity for FOXP3 in tumor cells. The patients showed a median age of 56years with a male predominance. Sites of disease included lymph nodes (4), skin (2), subcutaneous tissue (1) and bone marrow (1). All cases showed monomorphic large cells, some with Hodgkin-like or anaplastic cells. All cases expressed pan T cell markers and lacked cytotoxic markers; one case showed diffuse PD1 staining. Only one case harbored human T-lymphotrophic virus (HTLV)-1 DNA within tumor cells and was classified as adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATLL). Among 5 HTLV1-negative cases, 3 were classified as peripheral T-cell lymphoma, not otherwise specified (PTCL, NOS) and 2 fulfilled criteria for ALK-negative anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) with diffuse and strong CD30 positivity. We concluded that Treg phenotype may be rarely seen in HTLV1-negative cases, such as PTCL, NOS and ALK-negative ALCL. Our findings expand the spectrum of T-cell lymphomas with regulatory phenotype and suggest that consideration should be given to HTLV1 DNA testing in the appropriate clinical setting to rule out ATLL.
View details for PubMedID 29898383