Vol 46, No 3 (2008)
Original paper
Published online: 2008-12-06

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Assessment of expression of selected Bcl-2 family proteins in lymphoid infiltration in patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia treated with nucleoside analogues.

Dorota Lemancewicz, Janusz Dziecioł, Jarosław Piszcz, Agnieszka Lebelt, Katarzyna Mazgajska-Barczyk, Beata Klim, Janusz Kłoczko
DOI: 10.2478/v10042-008-0053-0
Folia Histochem Cytobiol 2008;46(3):361-366.


B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (B-CLL) is characterized by clonal growth and accumulation of mature lymphoid cells due to disturbance in genetically regulated form of cell death called apoptosis. The intrinsic mechanism of apoptosis is controlled by Bcl-2 family proteins. Purine nucleoside analogues induce the apoptosis in cells in a state of quiescence. The aim of the study was to assess expression of selected Bcl-2 family proteins in neoplastic infiltration in bone marrow in patients with B-CLL treated with nucleoside analogues. The study comprised examination of bone marrow obtained routinely by trephine biopsy from 18 patients with B-CLL diagnosed before administration of purine nucleoside analogues treatment and after its completion. Expression of Bcl-2, Bcl-x and Bax proteins was examined. Lymphoid cells in bone marrow were present in all patients before administration of treatment. After treatment in two patients bone marrow was infiltrated in diffuse pattern, whereas other patients presented nodular pattern of infiltration. The difference between stage of infiltration before and after treatment was statistically significant (p<0.002). High percentage of infiltration cells with positive anti Bcl-2 reaction from 42.0% in one patient to 85.33+/-3.06% in four patients before treatment was observed. After treatment percentage of infiltration cells with positive anti Bcl-2 antibody reaction was from 33.0+/-18.38% in two patients to 99.0% in one patient. Positive correlation between stage of infiltration and expression of Bcl-2 protein was confirmed before and after treatment. Such correlations were not observed in case of Bax and Bcl-x. Strong staining of immunohistochemical reaction of cells in lymphoid infiltration with Bcl-2 antibody was confirmed. There was a difference between Bcl-/Bax ratio before and after treatment. Immunohistochemical assessment of expression of Bcl-2 family proteins in cells of lymphoid infiltration in bone marrow of patients with CLL is an important method in detection of minimal residual disease (MRD) after treatment.

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