The t(14;19)(q32;q13) involving the IGH@ and BCL3 loci is an infrequent cytogenetic abnormality detected in B-cell malignancies. We describe the clinicopathologic, cytogenetic, and molecular genetic characteristics of 14 cases of chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL) with t(14;19)(q32;q13). All patients (10 men and 4 women) had lymphocytosis; 10 had lymphadenopathy. Blood and bone marrow lymphocytes were predominantly small, but cytologically and immunophenotypically atypical. In all cases, t(14;19) was found in the neoplastic stem line; it was the sole abnormality in 4. Ten cases showed additional cytogenetic abnormalities, including trisomy 12 in 9 and complex karyotypes in 7. Fluorescence in situ hybridization demonstrated IGH@/BCL3 fusion gene in all cases. In all cases, the IGHV genes were unmutated, but only 7 expressed ZAP70. Seven cases preferentially used IGHV4-39. Our results indicate that t(14;19)(q32;q13) identifies a subset of CLL/SLL with distinctive clinicopathologic and genetic features. Furthermore, t(14;19) may represent an early, possibly primary, genetic event.
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