TO THE EDITOR:

Non-Hodgkin B-cell lymphomas are almost invariably derived from B lymphocytes that have undergone productive V(D)J rearrangements of their immunoglobulin genes and may additionally have experienced somatic hypermutation. In the case of follicular lymphomas, malignant clones undergo ongoing somatic hypermutation of the rearranged V(D)J allele as they further expand. The resulting B-cell receptor idiotype contains novel, tumor-specific sequences and thus represents a class of neoantigen unique to B-cell malignancies. Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) presentation and T-cell recognition of the B-cell idiotype have been demonstrated in mice1,2  and in humans.3-7 

Presentation of B-cell idiotype has typically been inferred through activation of cognate T cells. Immunoglobulin-derived peptides have been eluted from class II MHC (MHC-II) in a murine B-cell hybridoma line. Mass spectrometry has greatly improved direct detection of B-cell MHC ligands including germline-encoded immunoglobulin...

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