t(11;18) Is a marker for All Stage Gastric MALT Lymphomas That Will Not Respond o H. Pylori Eradication

Reviewer: William Levin, MD
The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Last Modified: December 10, 2001

Presenter: H. Liu
Presenter's Affiliation: Universiy College London
Type of Session: Scientific


  • Eradication of H. Pylori infection leads to complete regression of gastric mucosa associated lymphoid tissue (MALT)lymphoma in greater than 70% of cases.
  • The translocation t(11;18) is the sole chromosomal abberation in gastric MALT lymphoma.
  • This translocation is present in up to 50% of gastric MALT lymphomas and appears to represent more aggressive disease.
  • A pilot study found that response to anti-H. pylori therapy was poor in patients with t(11;18) positive gastric lymphomas.
  • The current study seeks to investigate this issue in a larger cohort.

    Materials and Methods

  • 111 patients with H. pylori positive gastric MALT lymphoma were treated with anti-H. pylori antibiotic therapy.
  • Clinical staging was performed prior to therapy.
  • The response of lymphoma to H. pylori therapy was determined by repeat endoscopy and biopsy.
  • Tissue samples were evaluated using reverse transcriptace polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).


  • t(11;18) was detected in 2 of the 48 pts who achieved a complete response and these two pts relapsed in the absence of H. pylori reinfection.
  • In contrast, the translocation was present in 67%(26 of 43) non-responders.

    Author's Conclusions

  • t(11;18) positive gastric MALT lymphomas do not respond to standard H. pylori therapy.

    Clinical/Scientific Implications
    While this is a single, small study, the results suggest that patients with this genetic abnormalty may be better treated with other forms of therapy.

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