How is CD30-positive primary cutaneous T cell lymphoproliferative disorder distinguished from systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL)?

Updated: Apr 20, 2020
  • Author: Lauren C Pinter-Brown, MD; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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A helpful tool for distinguishing cutaneous from systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma is to test for the presence of the t(2;5) translocation. This translocation—although often, but not always, present in cases of systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma—is usually absent in primary cutaneous cases.

Differentiation from lymphomatoid papulosis is not always possible based on histologic criteria. Immunologically, atypical lymphocytes are CD4-positive, with variable loss of CD2, CD3, or CD5.

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