Optimal primer selection for clonality assessment by polymerase chain reaction analysis: I. Low grade B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders of nonfollicular center cell type

Hum Pathol. 1994 Dec;25(12):1269-75. doi: 10.1016/0046-8177(94)90084-1.


Recent polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based studies focused on the detection of immunoglobulin heavy chain gene (IgH) rearrangements have suggested that clonal populations may be amplified more easily from certain categories of B-cell neoplasia than others and that primer makeup can be a critical factor in successful amplification. However, these particular reports contained relatively few low grade B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders of nonfollicular center cell type (LG-BLPD) and used only a limited panel of available primer sets for PCR amplification of monoclonal B-cell populations. To address this issue more extensively we evaluated 156 samples of LG-BLPD by the PCR to determine optimal primer selection in this setting. All cases were classified according to standard morphological and immunophenotypic criteria, with monoclonality documented by Ig light chain restriction analysis. The LG-BLPD included 33 cases of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), 57 cases of small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL), 10 cases of atypical CLL, 32 cases of mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), 17 plasma cell neoplasms (PCNs), and seven cases of hairy cell leukemia (HCL). All primer sets included a 3' IgH joining region consensus primer, whereas the 5' IgH variable region (VH) primer was different in each set. The first-line panel included the following: Set 1, VH-framework III consensus primer, and Set 2, seven separate VH-framework I family-specific primers. A reserve panel of alternate VH consensus primers directed at framework II or III regions was used only when Set 1 showed no evidence of B-cell monoclonality.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Primers
  • Gene Rearrangement
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains / genetics
  • Immunoglobulin Variable Region / genetics
  • Leukemia, Hairy Cell / genetics
  • Lymphoma / genetics
  • Lymphoproliferative Disorders / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plasmacytoma / genetics
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction*


  • DNA Primers
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains
  • Immunoglobulin Variable Region