Heterogeneity of cell lineages in L3 leukemias

B. Koziner, R. Mertelsmann, M. Andreeff, Z. Arlin, H. Hansen, E. De Harven, S. McKenzie, T. Gee, R. A. Good, B. Clarkson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Five cases of adult leukemia with L3 morphology in bone marrow were studied for the presence of immunologic, metabolic, and enzymatic markers. Among the 5 patients, there were 4 males and 1 female. Median age was 66 with a range of 16-80 yr. Median survival was only 5 mth. Serum lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels, 3H-thymidine labeling indices, and DNA/RNA content of the L3 lymphoblasts were markedly elevated. B-cell markers were found in 3 cases, 2 exhibiting surface membrane IgM-λ, and 1 IgG-K. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT) enzymatic activity was consistently low in this group. In 1 case, the L3 lymphoblasts displayed only surface Fc receptors demonstrated by the binding of aggregated IgG. TdT activity was found to be significantly increased. In another instance, the lymphoblasts formed spontaneous rosettes with sheep erythrocytes and exhibited paranuclear staining with acid phosphatase. TdT activity was found to be low. Although most of the L3 leukemias are neoplasias of B lymphocytes, other lineages may also express this morphology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)694-698
Number of pages5
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1980
Externally publishedYes


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