Cozzi / Comazzi

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Marzia Cozzi

Marzia Cozzi graduated in Veterinary Medicine in October 2014 with thesis' title " Prognostic factors in canine acute leukaemias: a retrospective study of 71 cases". In 2013 she started her thesis' internship at the Flow Cytometric Service of the Department of Veterinary Sciences and Public Healt. Main activities: diagnosis of limphomas and leukemias by cytology and flow cytometry.
During the academic career she supported dr Enrico Arioli in the clinical practice as a job training.


Tutor: Stefano Comazzi

DVM, phD, dipl ECVCP, Milan
Diplomate European College of Veterinary Clinical Pathology (ECVCP), assistant professor at DIVET, University of Milan, Italy since 1999. Teacher of several academic courses in different aspects of veterinary clinical pathology for students in Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science at University of Milan and Udine. He held seminars and lessons for European Academia (University of Zurich, CH; University of Cambridge, UK).
He is in charge President of the European Society of Veterinary Clinical Pathology (ESVCP) and served in the editorial board of Veterinary Clinical Pathology journal.
Author of more than 70 papers on international peer- reviewed journals, hundreds of congress presentations and chapters of Italian and international books, including the VI edition of Schalm’s Veterinary Hematology.
Organizer of the international network on canine lymphoma ( and meetings on Veterinary Clinical Pathology and onco-haematology (Workshop on canine lymphoma, Lugano, 2013; XVI ESVCP meeting, Milan, 2014).
Dr Comazzi has been leader of local unit in two funded FIRST project of canine pantropic coronaviruses and on canine lymphoma.
Research activities is veterinary clinical pathology and laboratory medicine and it is mainly focused on lympho-myeloproliferative diseases, diagnostic cytology and immunology and flow cytometric aspects during different diseases of domestic animals. In particular his activity is currently focused in the identification of possible biomarkers useful in routine diagnostic for the stratification of dogs with lymphoma in different risk classes.
As the chair of the diagnostic working group of the European Canine Lymphoma Network dr Comazzi is currently involved on the process of standardization of the diagnostic approach to canine lymphoma and, on such an aim, he is also currently involved in worldwide joint initiatives for the standardization of flow cytometric approach to canine and feline lymphoma and leukemia.

Research project:
Identification of canine Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma ABC-like and GCB-like subtypes via flow cytometry and comparison with human counterparts

Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common lymphoma subtype in the dog, accounting for up to 50% of canine lymphoma cases, and is correlated to a relatively good prognosis. The dog is today regarded as an animal model to study human , in particular, the identification of genetic abnormalities in canine lymphoma overlapping those recognized in human lymphoma suggests that, beside clinical presentation, clinical-pathological features and classifications, also lymphoma pathogenesis is similar between the two species. Human DLBCL (hDLBCL) are subdivided into two prognostic subtypes, ABC-like and GBC-like, based on two main immunohistochemical algorithms (Hans’ and Chang’s)(figure 1).This sub classification also has a prognostic impact. In veterinary literature two main studies suggest that the dog can be a good model of hDLBCL.

The objectives of the project are here described:


The first step is to evaluate the possible application of Hans’ and Chang’s algorithms to a large number of canine Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma (cDLBCL) cases already collected to assess the incidence of the different cDLBCL subtypes and their possible prognostic role. Aim of this first part is to select some putative markers that may be checked via flow.

Figure 1: Decision algorithm for classification of DLBCL cases as described by Hans et al (2004) (A) and Chang et al (2004) (B)

Immunophenotyping by flow cytometry is a faster and less invasive technique than immunohistochemistry. Thus, validation of a flow cytometric technique to assess antibodies would enhance the application of Hans’ and Chang’s algorithms in veterinary practice and enlarge case-enrollment for prospective studies. In particular some preliminary studies stressed the possible role of CD138 as a useful biomarker.



The third section of the present study will be conducted prospectively to evaluate the prognostic role of antibodies and/or of Hans’ and Chang’s algorithms in dogs with DLBCL fully staged and receiving a standardized treatment protocol.

Results obtained with the present project would not only deepen the knowledge about cDLBCL, but would also support the use of the dog as an animal model, highlighting similarities and differences of cDLBCL subtypes from the human counterparts.

Figure 2: cytologic smear from a lymph node aspirate in a dog with DLBCL