CD Markers
CD79a

Reviewer: Nat Pernick, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 29 December 2015, last major update February 2002

Copyright: (c) 2002-2015, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.

PubMed Search: CD79a[title]

Related topics: CD79, CD79b
Cite this page: CD79a. PathologyOutlines.com website. http://www.pathologyoutlines.com/topic/cdmarkerscd79a.html. Accessed June 20th, 2018.
Definition / general
  • Also called MB-1, B cell antigen receptor complex associated protein alpha-chain
  • Encodes Ig-alpha protein of the B cell antigen receptor; the receptor also includes Ig-beta protein (CD79b) and surface immunoglobulin
  • Expressed early in B cell differentiation (often positive when mature B cell markers are negative); also expressed in plasma cells
  • In AML, presence usually represents aberrant B cell antigen in leukemias of distinct myeloid linage, not biphenotypic differentiation (Cancer Genet Cytogenet 2005;163:62)
  • CLL patients have low B cell-IgM surface expression due to defects in glycosylation and folding in µ and CD79a chains (Blood 2005;105:2933)
  • Less specific than PAX5 for acute leukemia (Cancer Res 2004;64:7399)
  • OMIM #112205, Blood 1995;86:1453 (early study)
Uses by pathologists
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on other servers:

Measles related appendicitis: Warthin-Finkeldey giant cells (fig C)

Follicular dendritic cell tumor (fig 14)

Lymphoplasmacyte rich meningioma

Quality control



Leukemia / lymphoma:

Infarcted lymphomas (figs 2 & 6)

Pro B acute lymphoid leukemia (bottom left)

Primary mediastinal B cell lymphoma

T cell lymphoblastic leukemia (middle right)

t(8;21) myeloid leukemia (bottom right)

T cell lymphoblastic lymphoma with
coexisting Langerhans cell histiocytosis (fig B)

Peripheral T cell lymphomas


Positive staining - normal
  • B cells, plasma cells
Positive staining - disease
Negative staining