Canine epitheliotropic cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) is a spontaneous neoplasm of the skin and mucous membranes of aged dogs. The WHO classification of tumours of haematopoietic and lymphoid tissues in human beings recognizes three forms of cutaneous epitheliotropic CTCL: mycosis fungoides (MF), Sézary syndrome and pagetoid reticulosis. In this series of dogs (n = 56), there were 39 cases of MF, 16 cases of pagetoid reticulosis and a single case of Sézary syndrome. Epitheliotropic T cells in CTCL lesions expressed CD8 in 44 of 55 dogs (80%) assessed; neither CD4 nor CD8 was expressed in the remainder. This contrasts with human MF in which αβ T-cell receptors (TCR) and CD4 are dominantly expressed. Molecular clonality assessment of canine epitheliotropic CTCL utilizing PCR primers specific for canine TCR gamma (TCRG) was performed. Of the 45 canine cases assessed, TCRG monoclonality was detected in 36 cases (80%). TCR typing of canine epitheliotropic CTCL revealed that TCRγδ was expressed in 60% of cases, including all cases of canine pagetoid reticulosis assessed. Either muco-cutaneous junctions or tissues of the oral cavity were the sites of lesions in 32 dogs (57%) with epitheliotropic CTCL. Analysis of the topography of lesions revealed an association with TCR type. If epitheliotropic CTCL lesions occurred in both locations, T cells were more likely to express TCRγδ (γδ : αβ = 2.0). These data establish that canine skin trafficking T cells have a far wider range than previously thought; this includes tongue, gingival, buccal and palatine mucosae.
ASJC Scopus subject areas