Epstein-Barr virus-associated extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type of the hypopharynx, in a renal allograft recipient: case report and review of literature

Hum Pathol. 2001 Nov;32(11):1264-8. doi: 10.1053/hupa.2001.28962.


Posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLPDs) are predominantly B-cell lymphoproliferations, whereas a T-cell origin is rarely observed. In contrast to B-cell PTLPD, T-cell PTLPDs show an inconsistent association with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). Until now, only 13 cases of EBV-associated T-cell PTLPDs have been reported. We describe a case of an EBV-associated T-cell PTLPD in a renal allograft recipient 2 years after transplantation. Histologic examination showed medium- to large-sized lymphoid cells with an angiocentric growth pattern and necrosis. The atypical cells showed a CD2+, CD3epsilon+, CD7+, CD43+, CD45R0+, CD56+, and CD4-, CD5-, CD8- betaF1- phenotype with expression of the latent membrane protein (LMP)-1 of EBV. In addition, EBV-specific RNAs (EBER 1/2) were identified by in situ hybridization. Molecular analysis of the T-cell receptor (TCR) gamma chain by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) showed a polyclonal pattern. The morphologic, immunohistochemical, and molecular findings were consistent with a diagnosis of an EBV-associated extranodal natural killer (NK)/T-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) of nasal type. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of this rare entity in the posttransplant setting.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Antigens, CD / analysis
  • Antigens, CD / immunology
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections / classification
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections / diagnosis*
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections / virology
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / genetics
  • Humans
  • Hypopharynx* / pathology
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Killer Cells, Natural*
  • Lymphoma, T-Cell / classification
  • Lymphoma, T-Cell / diagnosis*
  • Lymphoma, T-Cell / virology
  • Male
  • Nasopharynx
  • Opportunistic Infections / classification
  • Opportunistic Infections / diagnosis*
  • Opportunistic Infections / virology
  • Pharyngeal Neoplasms / classification
  • Pharyngeal Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Pharyngeal Neoplasms / virology
  • RNA, Viral / analysis


  • Antigens, CD
  • RNA, Viral