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Ann Rheum Dis 64:958-960 doi:10.1136/ard.2004.030684
  • Concise report

Changes in salivary gland immunohistology and function after rituximab monotherapy in a patient with Sjögren’s syndrome and associated MALT lymphoma

  1. J Pijpe1,
  2. G W van Imhoff2,
  3. A Vissink1,
  4. J E van der Wal3,
  5. P M Kluin3,
  6. F K L Spijkervet1,
  7. C G M Kallenberg4,
  8. H Bootsma5
  1. 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University Hospital Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Haematology, University Hospital Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  3. 3Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University Hospital Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  4. 4Department of Clinical Immunology, University Hospital Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  5. 5Department of Rheumatology, University Hospital Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr J Pijpe
    Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University Hospital Groningen, PO Box 30.001, 9700 RB Groningen, The Netherlands; j.pijpekchir.azg.nl
  • Accepted 27 October 2004
  • Published Online First 2 December 2004

Abstract

Objectives: To report the successful use of rituximab on salivary gland immunohistology and function in a patient with Sjögren’s syndrome (SS) and associated MALT lymphoma.

Case report: The patient was a 42 year old woman with primary SS and associated MALT lymphoma located in the parotid gland and the hard palate. Four infusions of rituximab (375 mg/m2) weekly resulted in complete remission of the lymphoma. An incision biopsy of the parotid gland before and after treatment showed improvement of the (immuno)histopathological characteristics of SS, with possible regeneration of salivary gland tissue. Furthermore, salivary analysis showed decreased inflammatory characteristics and increased stimulated salivary flow.

Discussion: Rituximab is a promising agent in the treatment of SS associated MALT lymphoma. In addition to the effect on MALT lymphoma, B cell depletion by rituximab may also attenuate the activity of SS. This case report is the first to describe the effect of rituximab on histological and sialometric/chemical characteristics of SS. The efficacy of rituximab in the treatment of SS warrants further investigation.

Footnotes