Molecular analysis of the NPM-ALK rearrangement in Hodgkin's disease

J Pathol. 1996 Feb;178(2):128-32. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1096-9896(199602)178:2<128::AID-PATH444>3.0.CO;2-H.


The fusion gene NPM-ALK occurs in a subset of anaplastic large cell lymphomas (ALCLs), as a result of a chromosomal translocation, t(2;5) (p23;q35). It has been suggested that Hodgkin's disease (HD) and ALCL share a common histogenesis because of pathological and phenotypical similarities. In order to check this hypothesis, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was performed to detect the hybrid NPM-ALK gene in 30 tumour samples, including 22 lymph node biopsies from HD and eight ALCL specimens. The threshold level of sensitivity was shown to reach at least 1/10(4) by dilution experiments using cell lines as positive and negative controls. The expected 177 bp product indicative of the NPM-ALK rearrangement was identified in Karpas 299 and SUDHL-1 cell lines and in two out of eight ALCLs. The 22 HD cases were negative, even after two successive tests. Thus, since the ALCL-specific genetic alteration was absent in our series of HD cases, the present study does not support the hypothesis that HD and ALCL are histogenetically related entities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase
  • Blotting, Southern
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 2 / genetics*
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 5 / genetics*
  • Gene Rearrangement*
  • Hodgkin Disease / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, Large-Cell, Anaplastic / genetics
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • Nucleophosmin
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / genetics
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • Translocation, Genetic*


  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Nucleophosmin
  • ALK protein, human
  • Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases