Differential expression of CD200 in B-cell neoplasms by flow cytometry can assist in diagnosis, subclassification, and bone marrow staging

Am J Clin Pathol. 2014 Dec;142(6):837-44. doi: 10.1309/AJCPBV9ELXC0ECVL.


Objectives: To analyze CD200 expression by flow cytometry in a large series of B-cell neoplasms in a variety of tissue types in comparison with benign B-lineage cells.

Methods: We measured CD200 expression levels in 505 peripheral blood (PB), bone marrow (BM), and lymphoid tissue biopsy specimens, including 364 cases positive for B-cell leukemias and lymphomas.

Results: CD200 expression in chronic lymphocytic leukemia cases was as bright as or brighter than normal PB B cells in nearly all cases, while mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) cases were usually dim or negative. However, rare MCL cases (about 5%) were moderately bright for CD200. Marginal zone lymphomas varied by subtype, with nodal cases brighter, splenic cases dimmer, and extranodal cases heterogeneous for CD200 expression. Follicular lymphoma (FL) cells were brighter for CD200 in BM specimens than in lymph nodes. In some BM specimens, dim CD200 could distinguish FL cells from background hematogones. Large B-cell lymphomas of the non-germinal center type tended to be brighter for CD200 than those of the germinal center type, while Burkitt lymphomas were negative.

Conclusions: CD200 staining by flow cytometry can be useful in the differential diagnosis of B-cell neoplasms and in their detection in the BM.

Keywords: B-cell neoplasms; CD200; CLL; Flow cytometry; Hematogones.

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, CD / analysis
  • Antigens, CD / biosynthesis*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Bone Marrow / pathology
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Humans
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Leukemia, B-Cell / classification
  • Leukemia, B-Cell / diagnosis*
  • Lymphoma, B-Cell / classification
  • Lymphoma, B-Cell / diagnosis*
  • Neoplasm Staging


  • Antigens, CD
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • antigens, CD200