Author(s): Fajgenbaum DC, van Rhee F, Nabel CS
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Abstract Multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD) describes a heterogeneous group of disorders involving proliferation of morphologically benign lymphocytes due to excessive proinflammatory hypercytokinemia, most notably of interleukin-6. Patients demonstrate intense episodes of systemic inflammatory symptoms, polyclonal lymphocyte and plasma cell proliferation, autoimmune manifestations, and organ system impairment. Human herpes virus-8 (HHV-8) drives the hypercytokinemia in all HIV-positive patients and some HIV-negative patients. There is also a group of HIV-negative and HHV-8-negative patients with unknown etiology and pathophysiology, which we propose referring to as idiopathic MCD (iMCD). Here, we synthesize what is known about iMCD pathogenesis, present a new subclassification system, and propose a model of iMCD pathogenesis. MCD should be subdivided into HHV-8-associated MCD and HHV-8-negative MCD or iMCD. The lymphocyte proliferation, histopathology, and systemic features in iMCD are secondary to hypercytokinemia, which can occur with several other diseases. We propose that 1 or more of the following 3 candidate processes may drive iMCD hypercytokinemia: systemic inflammatory disease mechanisms via autoantibodies or inflammatory gene mutations, paraneoplastic syndrome mechanisms via ectopic cytokine secretion, and/or a non-HHV-8 virus. Urgent priorities include elucidating the process driving iMCD hypercytokinemia, identifying the hypercytokine-secreting cell, developing consensus criteria for diagnosis, and building a patient registry to track cases.
This article was published in Blood
and referenced in Journal of Gastrointestinal & Digestive System