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Adult Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Treatment (PDQ®)

  • Last Modified: 04/11/2014

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Treatment for Diffuse, Small Noncleaved-Cell/Burkitt Lymphoma

Standard Treatment Options for Diffuse, Small Noncleaved-Cell/Burkitt Lymphoma
        Aggressive multidrug regimens
        Central nervous system (CNS) prophylaxis
Current Clinical Trials

Diffuse, small, noncleaved-cell/Burkitt lymphoma typically involves younger patients and represents the most common type of pediatric NHL.[1]

Standard Treatment Options for Diffuse, Small Noncleaved-Cell/Burkitt Lymphoma

Standard treatment options for diffuse, small, noncleaved-cell/Burkitt lymphoma include the following:

  1. Aggressive multidrug regimens.

  2. Central nervous system (CNS) prophylaxis.

Aggressive multidrug regimens

Standard treatment for diffuse, small, noncleaved-cell/Burkitt lymphoma is usually with aggressive multidrug regimens similar to those used for the advanced-stage aggressive lymphomas (such as diffuse large cell).[2-4] In some institutions, treatment includes the use of consolidative bone marrow transplantation.[5,6] Adverse prognostic factors include bulky abdominal disease and high serum lactate dehydrogenase.

Evidence (aggressive multidrug regimens):

  • An intensive clinical trial (CLB-9251 [NCT00002494]) used aggressive combination chemotherapy patterned after that used in childhood Burkitt lymphoma and has been very successful for adult patients.[7-11] More than 60% of advanced-stage patients were free of disease at 5 years.[7-12]
Central nervous system (CNS) prophylaxis

Patients with diffuse, small, noncleaved-cell/Burkitt lymphoma have a 20% to 30% lifetime risk of CNS involvement. CNS prophylaxis with methotrexate is recommended for all patients, usually given as four to six intrathecal injections.[13] (Refer to the PDQ summary on Adult Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Treatment for more information).

Evidence (CNS prophylaxis):

  • In a series of 41 patients treated with systemic and intrathecal chemotherapy, 44% of those who presented with CNS disease and 13% of those who relapsed with CNS involvement became long-term disease-free survivors.[14] CNS relapse patterns were similar whether or not patients received radiation therapy, but increased neurologic deficits were noted among those patients who received radiation therapy.
Current Clinical Trials

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with adult Burkitt lymphoma. The list of clinical trials can be further narrowed by location, drug, intervention, and other criteria.

General information about clinical trials is also available from the NCI Web site.

References
  1. Blum KA, Lozanski G, Byrd JC: Adult Burkitt leukemia and lymphoma. Blood 104 (10): 3009-20, 2004.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  2. Longo DL, Duffey PL, Jaffe ES, et al.: Diffuse small noncleaved-cell, non-Burkitt's lymphoma in adults: a high-grade lymphoma responsive to ProMACE-based combination chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol 12 (10): 2153-9, 1994.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  3. McMaster ML, Greer JP, Greco FA, et al.: Effective treatment of small-noncleaved-cell lymphoma with high-intensity, brief-duration chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol 9 (6): 941-6, 1991.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  4. Thomas DA, Faderl S, O'Brien S, et al.: Chemoimmunotherapy with hyper-CVAD plus rituximab for the treatment of adult Burkitt and Burkitt-type lymphoma or acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Cancer 106 (7): 1569-80, 2006.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  5. Freedman AS, Takvorian T, Anderson KC, et al.: Autologous bone marrow transplantation in B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: very low treatment-related mortality in 100 patients in sensitive relapse. J Clin Oncol 8 (5): 784-91, 1990.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  6. Sweetenham JW, Pearce R, Philip T, et al.: High-dose therapy and autologous bone marrow transplantation for intermediate and high grade non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in patients aged 55 years and over: results from the European Group for Bone Marrow Transplantation. The EBMT Lymphoma Working Party. Bone Marrow Transplant 14 (6): 981-7, 1994.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  7. Soussain C, Patte C, Ostronoff M, et al.: Small noncleaved cell lymphoma and leukemia in adults. A retrospective study of 65 adults treated with the LMB pediatric protocols. Blood 85 (3): 664-74, 1995.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  8. Magrath I, Adde M, Shad A, et al.: Adults and children with small non-cleaved-cell lymphoma have a similar excellent outcome when treated with the same chemotherapy regimen. J Clin Oncol 14 (3): 925-34, 1996.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  9. Adde M, Shad A, Venzon D, et al.: Additional chemotherapy agents improve treatment outcome for children and adults with advanced B-cell lymphomas. Semin Oncol 25 (2 Suppl 4): 33-9; discussion 45-8, 1998.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  10. Hoelzer D, Ludwig WD, Thiel E, et al.: Improved outcome in adult B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Blood 87 (2): 495-508, 1996.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  11. Lee EJ, Petroni GR, Schiffer CA, et al.: Brief-duration high-intensity chemotherapy for patients with small noncleaved-cell lymphoma or FAB L3 acute lymphocytic leukemia: results of cancer and leukemia group B study 9251. J Clin Oncol 19 (20): 4014-22, 2001.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  12. Mead GM, Sydes MR, Walewski J, et al.: An international evaluation of CODOX-M and CODOX-M alternating with IVAC in adult Burkitt's lymphoma: results of United Kingdom Lymphoma Group LY06 study. Ann Oncol 13 (8): 1264-74, 2002.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  13. Rizzieri DA, Johnson JL, Niedzwiecki D, et al.: Intensive chemotherapy with and without cranial radiation for Burkitt leukemia and lymphoma: final results of Cancer and Leukemia Group B Study 9251. Cancer 100 (7): 1438-48, 2004.  [PUBMED Abstract]

  14. Magrath IT, Haddy TB, Adde MA: Treatment of patients with high grade non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and central nervous system involvement: is radiation an essential component of therapy? Leuk Lymphoma 21 (1-2): 99-105, 1996.  [PUBMED Abstract]