Stains & CD markers

Editorial Board Member: Patricia Tsang, M.D., M.B.A.
Deputy Editor-in-Chief: Genevieve M. Crane, M.D., Ph.D.
Frido Bruehl, M.D.
Christian M. Schürch, M.D., Ph.D.

Last author update: 2 March 2023
Last staff update: 2 March 2023

Copyright: 2002-2023,, Inc.

PubMed Search: CD70 pathology

Frido Bruehl, M.D.
Christian M. Schürch, M.D., Ph.D.
Page views in 2022: 253
Page views in 2023 to date: 173
Cite this page: Bruehl F, Schürch CM. CD70. website. Accessed September 29th, 2023.
Definition / general
  • Ligand to CD27 that is transiently upregulated upon stimulation of immune cells and delivers a costimulatory signal to T cells
Essential features
  • Tumor necrosis factor ligand superfamily member 7 (TNFSF7)
  • CD27 ligand (CD27L)
  • Ki24 antigen (Blood 1985;66:848)
  • Transiently upregulated during lymphocyte activation (J Immunol 1994;152:1756)
  • Only characterized ligand to CD27 with bidirectional signaling activity
  • Can be upregulated on leukemia cells after tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy (Sci Transl Med 2015;7:298ra119)
  • Reverse signaling through CD70 enhances NK cell function and immunosurveillance of CD27 expressing B cell malignancies (Blood 2017;130:297)
  • Regulatory T cells can gain CD70 expression after prolonged stimulation, curbing their suppressive activity on other T cells (Commun Biol 2020;3:375)
Clinical features
Uses by pathologists
  • No current clinical use by pathologists
Prognostic factors
Microscopic (histologic) images

Contributed by Christian Schürch, M.D., Ph.D.
Bone marrow biopsy

Bone marrow biopsy

Positive staining - normal
Positive staining - disease
Negative staining
Board review style question #1

Which of the following statements about CD70 is true?

  1. CD70 binds to CD28
  2. CD70 is negative in B cell lymphomas
  3. It is a sensitive and specific marker for multiple myeloma
  4. It is transiently expressed by activated immune cells
Board review style answer #1
D. CD70 is transiently expressed by activated immune cells. CD70 is the ligand to CD27. It is expressed in a majority of B and T cell lymphomas and is usually negative in plasma cell neoplasms.

Comment Here

Reference: CD70
Back to top
Image 01 Image 02