ARTICLE ABSTRACTPurpose: T lymphoblastic lymphomas (T-LBL) are rare disorders of immature T cells which predominantly involve the mediastinum. Their oncogenic pathways and prognostic variables are not clear.Experimental Design: We undertook a retrospective study of 41 cytoplasmic CD3+ T-LBL (nine cases aged <16 years) by assessing stage of maturation arrest based on T cell receptor (TCR) immunogenotyping, immunohistochemistry, and quantification of the oncogenes thought to be important in immature T cell malignancies.Results: Application of a TCR-based immunogenetic classification allowed the identification of three subcategories: 11 immature IM0/D-LBL showed no TCR or only incomplete TCRD DJ rearrangement and corresponded to cytoplasmic CD3+ precursors of uncertain lineage. Sixteen mature TCRDdel-LBL showed biallelic TCRD deletion and both TCRG and TCRB rearrangement, consistent with TCRαβ lineage restriction. Fourteen intermediate LBL (Int-LBL) showed complete TCRD VDJ and TCRG VJ rearrangement, with TCRB VDJ rearrangement in the majority. All Int-LBL expressed HOX11/TLX1 or HOXA9 transcripts and a proportion of the latter were associated with CALM-AF10 or NUP214-ABL fusion transcripts. IM0/D-LBL were restricted to adults with extrathymic disease and bone marrow involvement, whereas Int-LBL and TCRDdel-LBL were found in children and adults with predominantly thymic disease. In adults, the Int-LBL subgroup was associated with a significantly superior clinical outcome. This subgroup can be identified either by TCR immunogenotyping or HOXA9/TLX1 transcript quantification.Conclusion: Application of this molecular classification will allow the prospective evaluation of prognostic effects within pediatric and adult protocols.