The malignant cells in a patient with hairy cell leukemia responded most evidently to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in in vitro culture for 3 1/2 days when the conventional tritiated thymidine uptake method was used. Since the malignant cells from patients with several other forms of leukemia and the peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy individuals did not show a comparable degree of responsiveness to LPS, we could exclude the possibility that this response was due to effects on contaminating normal mononuclear cells or to the nonspecific conditioning effect through LPS-affected contaminating normal monocytes. Morphological changes were observed with photo- and electronmicroscopy. It is likely that the hairy cells from the patient did respond to LPS, and whether or not this phenomenon may be confined to this type of lymphoid leukemia is not being investigated.

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