Since the creation of the World Health Organization’s nasal natural killer (NK)/T-cell lymphoma category, the attempt to further classify, describe, and improve treatment in this entity has been underway. There has been quite a bit of confusion and frustration regarding diagnosis, staging, and treatment approaches. With his article in this issue of ONCOLOGY, Dr. Au has attempted to improve our knowledge of current approaches to NK/T-cell lymphomas, providing a thorough and contemporary review of the clinical management of these difficult tumors. The following commentary reflects a deep appreciation for the author’s work and expands upon a few points not previously highlighted.
With better disease definition, staging, and monitoring, treatment of extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma is becoming more rational. A large proportion of patients with localized nasal disease may enjoy prolonged disease-free survival. On the other hand, early HSCT or novel therapy may be recommended for aggressive extranasal disease.
Burkitt lymphoma (BL) is a unique B-cell lymphoma characterized by a high proliferation rate and cytogenetic changes related to c-myc proto-oncogene overexpression. Burkitt lymphoma is a highly aggressive B-cell lymphoma that is most frequently seen in children and young adults in endemic areas.
SAN FRANCISCO—HIV-positive patients with Burkitt’s lymphoma treated with intensive chemotherapy achieved high complete response rates similar to those without HIV infection, according to a retrospective review of 38 patients treated at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) between 1988 and 2000.