Plasma cell leukemia (PCL) is a rare form of plasma cell malignancy, few large series reported underlying genetic abnormalities. We systematically evaluated the genomic aberrations in 41 PCL patients by combining fluorescence in situ hybridization with cytoplasmic light chain immunofluorescence and correlated with their clinical outcome. The genomic aberrations in the 15 primary PCL (pPCL) and 26 secondary PCL (sPCL) were compared with 220 newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) patients. There was no significant difference in the prevalence of genetic abnormalities in pPCL and sPCL but del(13q), t(4;14), 1q21 amplification and del(1p21) were more common in PCL than MM. Patients with pPCL had higher creatinine and beta(2)-microglobulin levels and tended to have a longer overall survival than patients with sPCL. In univariant analysis, PCL patients with t(4;14) (p=0.006) and del(1p21) (p=0.003) had shorter overall survivals. In multivariant analysis adjusting for all tested genetic factors as well as clinico-biologically relevant factors including C-reactive protein, calcium and beta(2)-microglobulin, t(4;14) remained a significant predictor for adverse overall survival in PCL (p=0.008).