Researchers finding treatments for lymphoma — cancer of the immune system

Daybreak

Both were once deadly, but now we have a good chance of stopping and curing them

(WYTV) – Lymphoma is cancer of the lymphatic system — the part of your body that helps fight germs. Researchers are working to figure out how to beat it.

Lymphoma comes in two types — Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s. Both were once deadly, but now we have a good chance of stopping and curing them.

“The cancer in this case is the immune system,” said Dr. Stephen Ansell, a hematologist at the Mayo Clinic. “So, often, we’re trying to get the immune system to fight against the cancer but in this case, the challenge is the cancer is the immune system itself.”

The treatment depends on the type and stage of lymphoma. It may involve chemotherapy, medicines, radiation, a bone marrow transplant or some combination of these.

Even though it’s a cancer of the immune system, researchers have learned how to activate the patient’s immune system and have it target the cancer — in a sense, target itself.

The treatments we have today are highly successful in most patients.

Even if the first time around, there are challenges. New therapies are coming that hold a lot of promise.

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