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Understanding non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Alan C. Aisenberg
From: Science & Medicine: Volume 4 Number 3: Page 28 (June 1997)

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Abstract: Identification of surface antigens charcterizing lymphocytes, known as immunophenotyping, and techniques of cytogenetic and molecular genetic analysis are supersedign morphollogic classifications of non-Hodgkins lymphomas. Many of these neoplasms arise because of chromosomal abnormalities, particularly translocations, occuring while specific immunoglobulins and T cell receptors are being assembled. When the enhancer and promoter regions of these antigen receptor genes are brought together with oncogenes by translocation, the normally tightly regulated oncogenes are inappropriately expressed. The cell is transformed and, instead of dying, undergoes clonal expansion, which results in malignant disease.

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