Mu heavy chain disease with MYD88 L265P mutation: an unusual manifestation of lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma.

05 Aug 2022
Baloda V, Wheeler SE, Murray DL, Kohlhagen MC, Vos JA, Yatsenko SA, Agha ME, Djokic M, Swerdlow SH, Bailey NG


Mu heavy chain disease is a rare lymphoid neoplasm characterized by vacuolated bone marrow plasma cells and secretion of defective mu immunoglobulin heavy chains. The biological basis of mu heavy chain disease is poorly understood.


We report a case of mu heavy chain disease with MYD88 L265P mutation and deletion of 6q, genetic aberrations that are both strongly associated with lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma/Waldenström macroglobulinemia. Identification of the truncated mu immunoglobulin was facilitated by mass spectrometric analysis of the patient's serum.


Mu heavy chain disease has been described as similar to chronic lymphocytic leukemia; however, the frequency of lymphocytosis in mu heavy chain disease has not been previously reported. We reviewed all previously published mu heavy chain disease reports and found that lymphocytosis is uncommon in the entity. This finding, along with the emerging genetic feature of recurrent MYD88 mutation in mu heavy chain disease, argues that at least a significant subset of cases are more similar to lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma than to chronic lymphocytic leukemia.