POEMS syndrome is a rare monoclonal plasma cell disorder, with unique symptoms distinct from those of other plasma cell neoplasms, including high serum VEGF levels. Because the prospective isolation of POEMS clones has not yet been successful, their real nature remains unclear. Herein, we performed single-cell RNA-Seq of BM plasma cells from patients with POEMS syndrome and identified POEMS clones that had Ig λ light chain (IGL) sequences (IGLV1-36, -40, -44, and -47) with amino acid changes specific to POEMS syndrome. The proportions of POEMS clones in plasma cells were markedly smaller than in patients with multiple myeloma (MM) and patients with monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS). Single-cell transcriptomes revealed that POEMS clones were CD19+, CD138+, and MHC class IIlo, which allowed for their prospective isolation. POEMS clones expressed significantly lower levels of c-MYC and CCND1 than MM clones, accounting for their small size. VEGF mRNA was not upregulated in POEMS clones, directly indicating that VEGF is not produced by POEMS clones. These results reveal unique features of POEMS clones and enhance our understanding of the pathogenesis of POEMS syndrome.
Yusuke Isshiki, Motohiko Oshima, Naoya Mimura, Kensuke Kayamori, Yurie Miyamoto-Nagai, Masahide Seki, Yaeko Nakajima-Takagi, Takashi Kanamori, Eisuke Iwamoto, Tomoya Muto, Shokichi Tsukamoto, Yusuke Takeda, Chikako Ohwada, Sonoko Misawa, Jun-ichiro Ikeda, Masashi Sanada, Satoshi Kuwabara, Yutaka Suzuki, Emiko Sakaida, Chiaki Nakaseko, Atsushi Iwama