AIMS: The clinicopathological features of histiocyte-rich, T-cell-rich B-cell lymphoma (HRTR-BCL) were first recognized in 1992. In this study, 60 cases of HRTR-BCL were analysed in order to provide a detailed morphological and immunophenotypical profile of the disorder. METHODS AND RESULTS: HRTR-BCL is easily distinguished from other B-cell lymphomas rich in stromal T-cells by (i) a diffuse or vaguely nodular growth pattern, (ii) the presence of a minority population of CD15-, CD20+ large neoplastic B-cells, (iii) a prominent stromal component composed of both T-cells and non-epithelioid histiocytes, and (iv) the scarcity of small reactive B-cells. These criteria also enable a reliable distinction from lymphocyte-rich classical Hodgkin's lymphoma (CHL), from lymphocyte-predominant Hodgkin's lymphoma (LPHL), paragranuloma type and from peripheral T-cell lymphoma. Based on the morphology of the neoplastic cells and on their frequent bcl-6 immunoreactivity, we speculate that HRTR-BCL may be derived from a progenitor cell of germinal centre origin. CONCLUSIONS: HRTR-BCL presents characteristic clinical features, affecting predominantly middle-aged men who present with advanced stage disease and are at high risk of treatment failure. Considering these distinctive clinicopathological features, recognizing HRTR-BCL as a lymphoma entity may be justified.