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Reed-Sternberg lymphocyte nci-vol-7172-300.jpg

Reed-Sternberg cells (also known as lacunar histiocytes for certain types) are different giant cells found on light microscopy in biopsies from individuals with Hodgkin's lymphoma (aka Hodgkin's disease; a type of lymphoma), and certain other disorders. They are usually derived from B lymphocytes.[1]

They are named after Dorothy Reed Mendenhall (1874-1964) and Carl Sternberg (1872-1935), who provided the first definitive microscopic descriptions of Hodgkin's disease.[2][3]

Reed-Sternberg cells are large and are either multinucleated or have a bilobed nucleus (thus resembling an "owl's eye" appearance) with prominent eosinophilic inclusion-like nucleoli. Reed-Sternberg cells are CD30 and CD15 positive, usually negative for CD20 and CD45. The presence of these cells is pathognomonic for the diagnosis of classical Hodgkin's lymphoma. They can also be found in reactive lymphadenopathy (such as infectious mononucleosis, carbamazepine associated lymphadenopathy) and rarely non-Hodgkin lymphomas.


  1. ^ Hartlapp I, Pallasch C, Weibert G, Kemkers A, Hummel M, Re D (February 2009). "Depsipeptide induces cell death in Hodgkin lymphoma-derived cell lines". Leuk. Res.. doi:10.1016/j.leukres.2008.12.013. PMID 19233470.  
  2. ^ Reed D. On the pathological changes in Hodgkin's disease, with special reference to its relation to tuberculosis. Johns Hopkins Hosp Rep 1902;10:133-96.
  3. ^ Sternberg C. Uber eine eigenartige unter dem Bilde der Pseudoleukamie verlaufende Tuberculose des lymphatischen Apparates. Ztschr Heilk 1898;19:21-90.

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

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Reed-Sternberg cell

Reed-Sternberg cells

Reed-Sternberg cell (plural Reed-Sternberg cells)

  1. (oncology) A giant lymphocyte characteristic of Hodgkin's lymphoma.


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