Baliakas P, Agathangelidis A, Hadzidimitriou A, Sutton LA, Minga E, Tsanousa A, Scarfò L, Davis Z, Yan XJ, Shanafelt T, Plevova K, Sandberg Y, Vojdeman FJ, Boudjogra M, Tzenou T, Chatzouli M, Chu CC, Veronese S, Gardiner A, Mansouri L, Smedby KE, Pedersen LB, Moreno D, Van Lom K, Giudicelli V, Francova HS, Nguyen-Khac F, Panagiotidis P, Juliusson G, Angelis L, Anagnostopoulos A, Lefranc MP, Facco M, Trentin L, Catherwood M, Montillo M, Geisler CH, Langerak AW, Pospisilova S, Chiorazzi N, Oscier D, Jelinek DF, Darzentas N, Belessi C, Davi F, Ghia P, Rosenquist R, Stamatopoulos K
Blood 125 (5) 856-859 [2015-01-29; online 2014-12-17]
An unresolved issue in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is whether IGHV3-21 gene usage, in general, or the expression of stereotyped B-cell receptor immunoglobulin defining subset #2 (IGHV3-21/IGLV3-21), in particular, determines outcome for IGHV3-21-utilizing cases. We reappraised this issue in 8593 CLL patients of whom 437 (5%) used the IGHV3-21 gene with 254/437 (58%) classified as subset #2. Within subset #2, immunoglobulin heavy variable (IGHV)-mutated cases predominated, whereas non-subset #2/IGHV3-21 was enriched for IGHV-unmutated cases (P = .002). Subset #2 exhibited significantly shorter time-to-first-treatment (TTFT) compared with non-subset #2/IGHV3-21 (22 vs 60 months, P = .001). No such difference was observed between non-subset #2/IGHV3-21 vs the remaining CLL with similar IGHV mutational status. In conclusion, IGHV3-21 CLL should not be axiomatically considered a homogeneous entity with adverse prognosis, given that only subset #2 emerges as uniformly aggressive, contrasting non-subset #2/IGVH3-21 patients whose prognosis depends on IGHV mutational status as the remaining CLL.