We describe a 68-year old woman affected by chronic hepatitis C virus infection; hypertransaminasemia was first observed at the age of 46 years, when the patient was diagnosed uterus carcinoma. Since 1994 she had complained of xerostomia, xerophtalmia, pain at the left parotid and laterocervical adenomegaly. Neck ultrasound examination revealed enlarged intraglandular, submandibular and laterocervical lymph nodes. Fine-needle aspiration of both left parotid and laterocervical lymph nodes was not diagnostic. The histologic examination of the surgical biopsy of the left parotid and the right submandibular salivary gland allowed to diagnose mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphoma (MALT lymphoma). The patient was given alpha-interferon obtaining a clinical remission of the lymphoma and transitory normalization of transaminase level. The authors review the literature about some aspects of MALT lymphomas: a) the etiopathogenesis of MALT lymphomas and the mechanisms suspected to be involved in the evolution from a "benign" lymphoepithelial infiltrate to a neoplastic disorder; b) the relationship between chronic inflammatory diseases as Sjögren's syndrome and chronic C virus infection and MALT lymphomas, particularly MALT lymphomas of the salivary glands; c) the significance of the evidence of a B-cell clonality in the context of a lymphoepithelial lesion; d) diagnostic and therapeutic aspects of MALT lymphomas of the salivary glands
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