Systemic kappa light-chain deposition. An ultrastructural and immunohistochemical study

J. Linder, B. P. Croker, R. T. Vollmer, J. Shelburne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


This report describes the pathology of kappa light-chain deposition in a 55-year-old patient who presented with respiratory insufficiency and hepatomegaly. Biopsies of lung and liver showed PAS-positive deposits which did not stain with congo red, crystal violet, or thioflavin-T. By indirect immunoperoxidase techniques, the deposits were composed of kappa light-chain immunoglobulin. Electron microscopy revealed granular and fibrillar electron-dense material which lacked the characteristics of amyloid. Subsequent clinical studies showed this patient had a plasma cell dyscrasia. These data show that kappa light-chain deposition is not limited to the kidney, and that the first manifestation of a plasma cell dyscrasia may be systemic deposits of light chain. These deposits can be distinguished from amyloid by their immunochemical, tinctorial, and ultrastructural appearance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-93
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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