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The Journal of pathology

B cell lymphoma and myeloma in murine Gaucher's disease.


PMID 23775597

Abstract

Multiple myeloma and B cell lymphoma are leading causes of death in Gaucher's disease but the nature of the stimulus driving the often noted clonal expansion of immunoglobulin-secreting B cells and cognate lymphoid malignancy is unknown. We investigated the long-term development of B cell malignancies in an authentic model of non-neuronopathic Gaucher's disease in mice: selective deficiency of β-glucocerebrosidase in haematopoietic cells [Gba(tm1Karl/tm1Karl)Tg(Mx1-cre)1Cgn/0, with excision of exons 9-11 of the murine GBA1 gene, is induced by poly[I:C]. Mice with Gaucher's disease showed visceral storage of β-glucosylceramide and greatly elevated plasma β-glucosylsphingosine [median 57.9 (range 19.8-159) nm; n = 39] compared with control mice from the same strain [median 0.56 (range 0.04-1.38) nm; n = 29] (p < 0.0001). Sporadic fatal B cell lymphomas developed in 11 of 21 GD mice (6-24 months) but only two of eight control animals developed tumours by age 24 months. Unexpectedly, most mice with overt lymphoma had absent or few Gaucher cells but local inflammatory macrophages were present. Eleven of 39 of Gaucher mice developed monoclonal gammopathy, but in the control group only one animal of 25 had clonal immunoglobulin abnormalities. Seven of 10 of the B cell lymphomas were found to secrete a monoclonal paraprotein and the lymphomas stained intensely for pan-B cell markers; reactive T lymphocytes were also present in tumour tissue. In the Gaucher mouse strain, it was notable that, as in patients with this disease, CD138(+) plasma cells frequently surrounded splenic macrophages engorged with glycosphingolipid. Our strain of mice, with inducible deficiency of β-glucocerebrosidase in haematopoietic cells and a high frequency of sporadic lethal B cell malignancies, faithfully recapitulates human Gaucher's disease: it serves as a tractable model to investigate the putative role of bioactive sphingolipids in the control of B cell proliferation and the pathogenesis of myelomatosis-the most prevalent human cancer associated with this disorder.

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