Clinical features and prognosis of chronic natural killer cell lymphoproliferative disorders

Hematology. 2024 Dec;29(1):2307817. doi: 10.1080/16078454.2024.2307817. Epub 2024 Feb 6.


Objective: To analyze the current treatment status and prognostic regression of the chronic NK cell lymphoproliferative disorder (CLPD-NK).

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed the clinical features, treatment and prognosis of 18 patients with CLPD-NK who were treated at our Hospital between September 2016 and September 2022.

Results: Eighteen patients were included: three patients were treated with chemotherapy, five patients underwent immune-related therapy, one patient was treated with glucocorticoids alone, five patients were administered granulocyte colony-stimulating factor, blood transfusion therapy, or anti-infection therapy, followed by observation and follow-up, and four patients were observed without treatment. Fifteen patients survived, including two patients who achieved complete remission (CR) and seven patients who achieved partial remission (PR), of whom one patient progressed to Aggressive NK-cell leukemia (ANKL) and sustained remission after multiple lines of treatment; three patients were not reviewed, of which one patient was still in active disease, three patients developed hemophagocytic syndrome during treatment and eventually died, one of them had positive Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) expression. The 5-years overall survival rate was 83%.

Conclusion: Most patients with CLPD-NK have inert progression and a good prognosis, whereas some patients have a poor prognosis after progressing to ANKL and combined with hemophagocytic syndrome. Abnormal NK cells invading the center suggest a high possibility of ANKL development, and immunosuppressants and hormones are effective treatments for this disease.

Keywords: Chronic NK-cell lymphoproliferative disorders; clinical features; prognosis.

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections* / complications
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human
  • Humans
  • Killer Cells, Natural / metabolism
  • Leukemia* / metabolism
  • Leukemia, Large Granular Lymphocytic*
  • Lymphohistiocytosis, Hemophagocytic*
  • Lymphoproliferative Disorders* / diagnosis
  • Lymphoproliferative Disorders* / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies