Our lymphoma researchers are:
Lymphoma is a cancer that develops from white blood cells called lymphocytes. It occurs when a lymphocyte undergoes changes that allow it to divide uncontrollably and become long-lived.
Lymphoma develops within the lymph nodes, spleen, or bone marrow, collectively called lymphoid organs. The lymphoma cells initially grow within a single lump. Over time they may spread to other parts of the body.
Lymphoma shares many similarities with some types of leukaemia.
There are many types of lymphoma. These differ in:
Research is revealing how different types of lymphoma develop. Many occur because of changes in the genetic material of certain types of lymphocytes. For example, follicular lymphoma cells contain a genetic rearrangement that increases the amount of the cell survival protein Bcl-2 in cells.
Some lymphomas are triggered by a viral infection. Some types of lymphoma are associated with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), although most people who develop this common infection never get lymphoma. The virus introduces its own genetic material into lymphocytes. This may trigger the lymphocyte to divide uncontrollably or become long-lived.
There are many factors that can contribute to a person’s risk of developing lymphoma. These include:
The treatment of lymphoma depends on the type of lymphoma. Factors such as how rapidly the lymphoma is growing can influence how aggressively it is treated.
Many types of lymphoma are treated with combinations of:
WEHI researchers are not able to provide specific medical advice specific to individuals. If you have cancer and wish to find out more information about clinical trials, please visit the Australian Cancer Trials or the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry, or consult your medical specialist.