What Are The Basics of B-cell Lymphoma?

How to define B-cell lymphoma?

B-cell lymphoma is a type of cancer that forms in B-cells. B-cell lymphomas may be either indolent (slow-growing) or aggressive (fast-growing).

There are many types of B-cell lymphoma: Burkitt lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL), diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, follicular lymphoma, and mantle cell lymphoma.


What causes B-cell lymphoma?

The underlying cause of B-cell lymphoma is poorly understood. But it may be associated with:

  • Environmental factors
  • Immunodeficiency states
  • Connective-tissue disorders
  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Viruses


What are the signs of B-cell lymphoma?

When present, signs and symptoms may include:

  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck, armpit, or groin.
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Fever
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Night sweats
  • Abdominal pain

What are the prognostic factors of B-cell lymphoma?

Prognostic factors that may affect B-cell lymphoma may include:

  • Performance status: People with a good performance status usually have a better prognosis than people with a poor performance status. Performance status means how well a person can do ordinary tasks and daily activities.
  • Tumor bulk: Large tumours often have a less favourable prognosis. The smaller the tumor, the better the prognosis.
  • Hemoglobin levels: People with normal hemoglobin levels have a better prognosis than those with low hemoglobin levels.
  • Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) level: People with a normal level of LDH in the blood tend to have a better prognosis than those with higher LDH levels.
  • Age: People younger than 60 have a better prognosis than people older than 60.

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Jul 29, 2019

University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers found a rare type of lymphoma, primary effusion lymphoma, or PEL, can be simulated in the lab only by simultaneously infecting white blood cells with two viruses typically found in the tumors.

The cancerous B cells nearly always harbor two viruses, Epstein-Barr Virus, or EBV, and Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, or KSHV, which are both known to induce other types of cancer. The study now found that the two viruses support one another. When healthy B cells are exposed to both viruses within a day of one another, a small fraction of the cells remains infected for months. EBV allowed the cells to grow and maintain the KSHV virus stably for months. The researcher found that KSHV infection was most successful when cells were infected with EBV one day before being exposed to KSHV. That narrow window for success is likely one reason that dual infection and subsequent development into a PEL is rare in people.

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.