Monoclonal antibody identification of mononuclear cells in endomyocardial biopsy specimens from a patient with rheumatic carditis
Lymphoma, Large B-Cell, Diffuse
A 17-year-old woman with rheumatic carditis underwent endomyocardial biopsy both prior to and following treatment with prednisone and aspirin. Frozen sections from the endomyocardial biopsy specimens were studied with monoclonal antibodies by an indirect immunofluorescence technique to define the composition of the inflammatory infiltrate in the myocardium and to determine whether the composition of the infiltrate is distinctive and diagnostically useful. The specimen from the initial biopsy contained a heterogeneous infiltrate composed of T lymphocytes, macrophages, B lymphocytes, and mast cells. T lymphocytes predominated, and the ratio of T-helper to T-cytotoxic/suppressor cells was 2.0. Following treatment the overall cellularity of the infiltrate was diminished, but the infiltrate remained heterogeneous; T cells predominated, and the T-helper to T-cytotoxic/suppressor ratio was reversed, to 0.59. The composition of the inflammatory infiltrate in this case of rheumatic carditis distinguishes it immunologically from other "idiopathic," presumably virus-associated, forms of myocarditis.