* Lymphoma- Latest News, Latest Research | CANCERactive

* Lymphoma- Latest News, Latest Research | CANCERactive


Increase your personal odds of survival by empowering yourself with the latest research and news on Lymphoma Cancer; 'news you can use' today and incorporate into your Integrative treatment programme to increase your personal odds of survival.

'It's really helpful to have all the research on my cancer in one place, especially as it is the sort of info I can build into my plan immediately." Jane M, Brisbane, Australia


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Go to: Lymphoma, or lymphatic cancer - types, symptoms, causes and alternative treatments

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Organic Solvents increase risks of lymphoma

A study conducted by researchers from the Yale School of Public Health in New Haven, Connecticut has revealed that women who are exposed to organic solvents while at work have a higher risk of getting non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Incidence has increased by about 3 to 4% annually since the beginning of the 70’s.

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system, with tumours appearing in the lymphocytes, defender white cells.

originates from one’s lymphatic system, the core disease-repelling system in the human body. In this condition, tumors arise from lymphocytes, which are a kind of white blood cell. In its initial stages, symptoms of the ailment may only be the presence of swollen lymph nodes in one’s neck, armpit or groin areas; these are usually painless. Symptoms include swellings in the lymph nodes (neck, armpits, groin), fever, fatigue, weight loss, abdominal swelling or pain, difficulty breathing, and very itchy skin.

The study, which was published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, had involved 601 Connecticut women who were diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma between 1996 and 2000. 717 healthy women without the condition were used as the control group. The women’s occupational exposure to organic solvents was analysed and compared with their cancer risk.

Organic solvents are any solvents which contain carbon. Many of these chemicals, for example formaldehyde and benzene, are established carcinogens. Others like chlorinated solvents are organic solvents which also contain chlorine. These solvents are known to be harmful to the environment and humans alike.

The study found that exposure to carbon tetrachloride increased cancer risk by an enormous 130 per cent, while exposure to formaldehyde increased the women’s risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma by 30 per cent and chlorinated solvents increased risk by 40 per cent. The more a person is exposed to these chemicals, the higher the risk.

Occupational risks are higher for people involved in dry cleaning or spraying pesticides.Even embalmers have increased risk. (Rong Wang et al. Occupational Exposure to Solvents and Risk of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma in Connecticut Women. American Journal of Epidemiology 2009; 169(2):176-185)

Lymphoma vaccine boosts immune system action

A lymphoma vaccine uniquely made for each patient has been shown to extend time in remission during a Phase III clinical trial, scientists reported at the 2009 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Orlando.

"This is the first vaccine in lymphoma that’s shown a positive result, improving time to relapse," said Sattva Neelapu, M.D., assistant professor in M. D. Anderson’s Department of Lymphoma and Myeloma. He is also principal investigator for M. D. Anderson’s portion of the multicenter clinical trial. The vaccine, derived from a patient’s cancer cells, sparks an immune system response against the disease.

A likely key to success, Neelapu noted, is that only patients in complete remission or with minimal residual disease after chemotherapy were vaccinated.  Two other recent Phase III vaccine trials that vaccinated patients who were in partial remission or with stable disease were negative.
"With lymphoma, you can get patients to a minimal disease state with chemotherapy and then bring in the vaccine to mop up remaining cancer cells.  That’s the strategy, and it should work for other cancers," said Larry Kwak, M.D., Ph.D., who invented the vaccine while at the National Cancer Institute and now chairs M. D. Anderson’s

Department of Lymphoma and Myeloma. The 234 patients enrolled in the trial were first treated with a chemotherapy combination known as PACE.   The 117 patients who were in complete remission or had a complete response (unconfirmed) for at least six months then received either the vaccine or a placebo.  Median time to relapse for the 76 vaccinated patients was 44.2 months, compared with 30.6 months for the 41 who received placebo.  Follicular lymphoma is a slow-growing type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

"Immunology shows us that there’s a weak immune response at the onset of cancer but it’s somehow shut down very early," Kwak said. "The next generation of vaccines probably will be combined with therapy that interferes with mechanisms that shut off immune response."

The crucial component of Kwak’s vaccine is a receptor protein extracted from the patient’s malignant B cell lymphocytes and purified in large amounts.  The protein is combined with a delivery agent and an adjuvant growth factor and the whole cocktail is injected back into the patient.  "It’s the ultimate in personalised therapy," Kwak said.  "Even if two patients have the same type of lymphoma, their tumours will still have different proteins."

Scientists shown dormant virus causes cancer

Hot on the heels of the virus that can cause pancreatic cancer covered in the last edition of icon comes another that can trigger Burkitt’s lymphoma, a type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This cancer affects around 200 young adults aged between 13 and 24 each year in the UK but is more common in children living in equatorial Africa. Doubtless the next step will be to develop a highly expensive vaccine and force all school children to have a shot.

The cancer is triggered by a genetic accident in cells of the immune system, called B lymphocytes. Once that accident has happened, the chances of the cancer developing are greatly increased if those same cells are infected with a common virus, called the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV).

The research, published in PLoS Pathogens, undertaken by scientists at the University of Birmingham have thus identified a subset of Burkitt’s lymphomas in which EBV triggers a viral protein that keeps the tumour cells alive. Interestingly, this EBV protein behaves like a cellular protein, called bcl2, whose job is to keep normal cells alive.

Professor Alan Rickinson, lead author based at Cancer Research UK’s Institute for Cancer Studies at the University of Birmingham, said: EBV is carried by most of us as a ’dormant’ virus but in a very small proportion of people it can have devastating effects. Precisely how EBV helps to cause Burkitt’s lymphoma has remained a mystery. Now our study suggests that in some tumours it does so by switching on a protein that is usually inactive when the virus is dormant.
Around 90 per cent of adults in the UK are infected with EBV, most of them as young infants. Most infected people show no ill-effects, although a minority will develop glandular fever. Very rarely, the virus can trigger cancers, such as Burkitt’s lymphoma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Dr Lesley Walker, director of cancer information at Cancer Research UK, said: Cancer Research UK scientists have played a leading role in EBV research from the discovery of the virus to immunotherapy for EBV-related lymphoma and this is another first for us."

Are tricyclic antidepressants linked to Hodgkin’s lymphoma cancer risk?

People who take tricyclic antidepressants are at increased risk for a rare group of blood cancers known as non-Hodgkin lymphoma, according to study conducted by researchers from the Institute of Cancer Epidemiology at the Danish Cancer Society, and published in the journal Epidemiology.

"Our results indicate an increased risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma specifically among long-term users of tricyclic antidepressant medications," the researchers wrote. "Given the high prevalence of antidepressant use, this finding warrants additional studies."

This follows a previous study by the same researchers where long-term users of tricyclic drugs had a two and a half times higher risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma than those who took none. No increase in risk was found among those taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. "Our study, however, raises the hypothesis of a serious long-term side effect from tricyclic antidepressants, and this needs further research," lead researcher Susanne Oksbjerg Dalton said.

The rates of non-Hodgkin lymphoma have more than doubled in Denmark since the 1970s. (Source: www.medscape.com) (Ed: Of course it could just be that depressed people simply get more cancers. We know that depression is linked to lower blood oxygen levels and that this is a factor in cancer generation. The fact that no increase in risk was found Serotonin inhibitors seems to negate this argument a little though.)

Insulin resistence/intolerance found to increase cancer risk

A while ago, at CANCERactive we told you all about Insulin Resistance. ’Do you have trouble losing weight?’ This is a common sign, as are low levels of HDL, high triglycerides, high blood glucose levels and more. And while you are not a true diabetic, the principles seem the same for an estimate of up to 70 per cent of the population, who (frankly) just eat badly. We have also given you a number of research studies showing glucose drives cancer.

Not surprisingly, insulin resistance is a step along the road to diabetes and heart disease. Now it has been shown to be a step along the road to cancer too.

New research published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, concluded that ’there is a strong link between insulin resistance and the risk of developing postmenopausal breast cancer.’ Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York have concluded that the elevated insulin levels linked to insulin resistance result in post-menopausal women having a higher risk of breast cancer.


The researchers also found that elevated blood glucose and triglyceride levels raised the risk of breast cancer by 1.7 times. Increased diastolic blood pressure (the second number when you have your blood pressure measured ) raised the risk of breast cancer 2.4 times.

Two factors are important here:

  1. Although this research was conducted looking at breast cancer, you can bet this is true for many cancers, male and female.
  2. Yet again it highlights the point we consistently make about the daft sugar-laden diets given to cancer patients in UK Hospitals.

We have complained that the NHS booklet on ’a diet for chemotherapy’ shows little drawings of cheese burgers, milk shakes and sticky doughnuts on every page. My daughter was given ice cream and Ribena endlessly in her oncology unit.

Of course the good news for everyone preventers and people with cancer - is that insulin resistance and blood sugar levels are controllable and reverse-able. Just change your diet!!!

I will list here for everyone’s benefit some of the tips from my book ’The Rainbow Diet and how it can help you beat cancer’:

  • Eat six small meals a day, not one or two big ones
  • Eat whole foods and whole grains (never refined, processed or fast foods)
  • Avoid alcohol, fizzy soft drinks, sweets, cakes, white bread, white pasta, biscuits, chocolate. Diet drinks are especially bad! As are smoothies and purchased fruit juices; even many so-called health drinks.
  • Eat raw most days, on an empty stomach if possible
  • Eat your fruit first thing in the morning on an empty stomach
  • Eat steamed or grilled never fried
  • Avoid Dairy (lactose is a sugar)
  • Take probiotics in several strains
  • Ensure you have no yeast excesses in your body (take cinnamon, oregano, Pau D’Arco and wormwood).
  • And eat fresh raw garlic.

Remember, research from North Western shows that if you lose excess weight you reduce risk and even improve survival times.

The book contains far more detailed advice.


Being overweight increases cancer risk fact

Cancer Research UK have just researched 4,000 people and come up with the staggering fact that 97 per cent of people have no idea that being overweight is a significant cancer risk. Of course, had they read our report on the research we conducted 4 years ago they would have known that people haven’t much a clue what does cause cancer anyway. Indeed we went into all the key issues in our 2004 Cancer Prevention Conference, which was poorly attended by the ’major’ charities.

As we have been telling people for seven years, it all depends which report you read, and how much overweight you are, but to be just 7 kgs overweight knocks over 5 years off your life expectancy, and a whopping 13 years if you smoke as well. .All this is well documented in my book, ’Everything you need to know to help you beat cancer’  indeed it has been there since the first edition some 7 years ago.

All this comes in parallel with new Swedish research showing overweight women tend to be diagnosed with higher grade cancers than ladies who have restrained their weight.

One of the real issues is that many overweight people are in denial. We have had ladies write to us with breast cancer and they are 13 kgs over normal weight for their height. One described herself as ’cuddly’, another as ’being a bit chunky’.

In our original 2004 prevention research, people stated that giving up smoking was important, as was avoiding excess alcohol, and staying out of the sun. As we pointed out at the time, ’Burning is bad, sunshine is sensible’. 4 years ago there was too much bad science coming from cancer charities suggesting sunshine was carcinogenic. In fact there is actually a great deal of research that suggests that a daily dose of sun shine promotes vitamin D synthesis in the body, and reduces cancer risk. A few people also knew that exercise was a risk reducer. But, in all, few people knew any information about preventing cancer (unlike Heart disease or AIDS) and blame for this lack of information can only be laid at the doors of the Government and the cancer charities. It was in response to this research finding that CANCERactive decided to adopt the Precautionary Principle (that where there is expert research expressing concern, we will pass on that research information so that the people of Britain can make more informed choices). As a result just compare the volume of Prevention Topics we cover against those listed on the major charities web sites. Pesticides? EMF’s? Melatonin? Toxic Chemicals, from dioxins to oestrogen mimics in plastic bottles and preservatives?

Anyone who is unsure of the factors that may increase cancer risk should go to the prevention part of our web site where they will find more information on more possible causes than on any other UK charity web site. As you will see, we have given some weight to the issue of cancer prevention!

Men more likely to get cancer the issue is why?

Men are almost 40 per cent more likely than women to die from cancer, reveals a report published by the National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN).

And they are 16 per cent more likely to develop the disease in the first place.

After excluding breast cancer and cancers specific to one or other sex from the analysis, the difference is even greater with men being almost 70 per cent more likely to die from cancer and over 60 per cent more likely to develop the disease.

The researchers then looked at the figures, excluding lung cancer as well, because the disease and its main risk factor, smoking, is known to be more common in men.They expected to see that, across the broad range of remaining cancer types, men and women were just as likely as each other to die from and get the disease. But they found that for all of these cancers combined, men were still 70 per cent more likely than women to die from cancer and 60 per cent more likely to get cancer.

Experts suggest that a possible explanation for the differences seen for some types of cancer could be down to stereotypical male behaviour like down-playing important early symptoms and having an unhealthy lifestyle.

Even rogue cancer DNA repairs itself

CRUK scientists (Nature) have discovered a sensor which exists even in cancer cells. Some drugs try to damage cancer DNA. This sensor system is actually a family of proteins (alkyltransferase-like proteins or ATL’s) warns the cell and activates the DNA repair systems and so the drugs lose their effect.

Organic foods are better ignore the UK Food Standards Agency

All over the UK papers comes news of the ’ruling’ from the FSA that ’organic food is no more nutritious than other foods’. According to that well known medical journal, the Daily Mail, ’watchdogs’ have declared this to be true.

Claiming to be the largest and most comprehensive study of its kind, researchers for the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’ trawled through more than 50,000 studies on the value of foods since 1958.’ The results were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Dr Alan Dangour (a public health nutritionist, no less) who was the lead researcher stated that, ’Currently there is no research to support the selection of organically produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority’.

Spokesperson Gill Fine from the FSA burbled on about, ’Ensuring people had accurate information’ and ’no evidence of additional health benefits from eating organic foods’.

What staggers us at CANCERactive is that in order to resolve this very same question the EU has just spent 12 million of tax payers’ money conducting as near as can be, the definitive Clinical Trial, growing fields of organic food in parallel with normal pesticide and fertiliser-grown crops and then employing top scientists to give us the results. The FSA, which is after all a Government funded unit, ought to know this and use the data. And be clear, Gill: The ’accurate information’ is that there is a considerable difference. And this is just from early assessments. The project will continue for a few more years yet, as that is how long it takes to be sure. Professor Carlo Leifert, one of the CANCERactive patrons, is a lead member of the team.We covered the early conclusions in this very magazine.

The Daily Mail falls into the usual ’bad science’ trap too, meandering on about 50 years of research and 50,000 studies. But, the researchers didn’t use 50,000 studies, they used, sorry selected, 55 that ’met their criteria’, whatever they were. So one concludes therefore they left out a mere 49,945 studies from their conclusions. Perhaps one was the definitive EU study?

Then there is Dr Alan ’no evidence to support nutritional superiority’ Dangour. I quote about 10 - 15 such studies in my book ’The Rainbow Diet and how it can help you beat cancer’. Leifert and his team have a hundred more! What planet do these people live on? Al, old chap, there is rather a lot of scientific evidence actually; I cannot believe you think there is none..

But for the last word we will return to Gill ’no additional health benefit’ Fine. All I can conclude is that she finds pesticides tasty and of absolutely harmless. Of course that view would put her directly at odds with the EU, which recently concluded that there were ’deep concerns’ and cited health hazards including cancer as a need for more regulation. It is puzzling that Gill ’ensuring people have accurate information’ Fine does not seem to be telling you all about  research studies showing that farmers using pesticides develop more multiple myeloma, and another that this is due to the pesticide making pre-cancerous MGUS proteins in the blood, or (for example) that some third world suppliers to British retailers still use the banned pesticides of DDT and Lindane, each linked to higher rates of Breast Cancer. (If she is unsure, she could always trawl through back issues of Cancer Watch for more ’accurate information’.)

For the record, there is concern that organic foods grown on depleted soils offer little in additional mineral content over mass-farmed foods. How could they? On basic vitamins there is quite a lot of evidence that organic food is superior, but sometimes not by much. The real advantage seems to come in the area of complex natural compounds (like resveratrol, quercitin, omega 3 or polyphenols) where organic foods score much more highly. For example, the use of fungicide negates the need for grapes to produce fungus fighting resveratrol of their own several studies have measured this. And even 10 years ago researchers didn’t know too much about these compounds or their health benefits, and so did not research for them. How many such studies were in the ’selected’ group?

Personally I don’t think everybody should rush off and buy everything organic we have told you which foods research studies show are more likely to hold their pesticides, and which do not. So in a number of cases there is not a lot to worry about. But red fruits like strawberries and greens like broccoli do need extra caution before using the sprayed versions.

It is all very sad really. I think that the people, and especially the patients who want to beat cancer deserve better than this. But then, that’s why we set up CANCERactive.

Need to prevent thousands of older people dying from cancer, prematurely

As many as 15,000 people over 75 could be dying prematurely from cancer each year in the UK, according to research presented today at the National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN) conference.

These premature deaths could be prevented if cancer mortality rates in the UK dropped to match countries in Europe and America which have the lowest rates.

The researchers from the North West Cancer Intelligence Service (NWCIS) in Manchester compared cancer death rates in the UK with Europe and America.

They found that over the past decade the numbers of people dying from cancer in the under 75s has significantly dropped in the UK. But, little progress has been made in the over 75s and the gap in death rates with other countries is getting wider.

Dr Tony Moran, lead researcher from NWCIS, said It’s worrying that so many older people die from cancer in the UK compared with other countries. But, it’s not clear why this is. Research is urgently needed to understand the reasons for the extra deaths so that steps can be taken to prevent them.

New scientific study reveals flaws, even fraud, in Clinical Trials

Scientific study. Clinical Trial, Gold Standard. Non Sequetor. Well, at least according to Dr Daniele Fanelli at the University of Edinburgh. In a recent study Fanelli lists findings such as

Most clinical results are misleading

  • 5 per cent of scientists have admitted falsifying results
  • One third of scientists admitted observing such bad practice in others

Fanelli’s report states that the misconduct is more prevalent in clinical, medical, and pharmaceutical research. So much for the ’gold standard’; but then he goes on to refer to the high profits at stake where a few word changes can make all the difference, even if it’s not fraud but ’presentation’.

He also comments on studies that criticise vitamins suggesting that all too often, doses used are too low to have an effect, or the where vitamin tested is known not to have an effect on a particular disease whereas another, untested one, is.

All this coincides with a USA FDA report that reports deficiencies and flaws in up to 20 per cent of US drug clinical trials.

Green Tea and Cancer 5 cups a day please

From the Tohoku School of Medicine comes a 9-year study which followed the consumption of green tea by 42,000 people. Looking at blood cancers and cancer in lymph nodes in particular, the researchers found there was a 40 per cent reduction for the former, and 50 per cent for the latter, in those people consuming 5 cups per day (American Journal of Epidemiology).

In a second study on influenza, comparing green tea supplement with a placebo, researchers found that the group taking supplement had one third less cold and flu attacks. And twice as many people taking the placebo sought medical advice. (Journal of the American College of Nutrition)

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Vitamin D important to lymphoma patients

Lymphoma patients with a vitamin D deficiency are twice as likely to die from their cancer as patients with normal blood levels (defined as 25 nanograms per litre) say scientists at the Mayo Clinic (American Society of Haematology Conference).

50 per cent of patients in the study (all ’recently diagnosed’ in the years from 2002 to 2008) had a blood vitamin D deficiency. Over the following three years this group were 50 per cent more likely to become worse and twice as likely to die as those having normal blood vitamin D levels.

Chris Comment: We have long passed the point where there is a clear body of evidence that if you want to beat cancer you need to spend 30-60 minutes per day in the sun. If you cannot do that you should supplement. In March, 2010 (Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism) it was reported that ’59 percent of the US population is vitamin D deficient, with a quarter of the population ’extremely deficient.’

In my opinion it is essential that cancer patients consider taking a supplement of up to 5000 IUs of vitamin D every day. The research is consistent across cancers from breast to colon, prostate to lung. Last year we covered research in icon that showed not simply that this was THE prevention vitamin, but that it possessed the ability to ’normalise’ a cancer cell. You can read more on our web site in the article ’Vitamin D are you getting enough’. Top American Cancer Centres now recommend it to their cancer patients. Meanwhile some ill informed UK ’cancer experts’ still tell people not to go in the sun. Remember my motto, ’Sunshine is sensational; burning is bad’.

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Early studies show lymphoma responds to fucoidan

Fucoidan is a natural compound found in various forms of seaweed like kombu, limu, wakame andmozuku plus animals like the sea cucumber. Researchers from the Hashemite University in Jordan at the AACR Dead Sea International Conference on Advances in Cancer Research working on previous studies that the extract from common brown seaweed causes cancer cell death (apoptosis) and shrinks tumours, have found that fucoidan suppressed cancer cell growth and caused a significant increase in apoptosis, or cellular death, in lymphoma cancer cells while leaving healthy cells intact.

Previous research studies in 2002 and 2005 have labelled Fucoidan as an exciting new ingredient with potential for cancer treatment. Seaweeds containing fucoidan have been found to have anti-tumor activity in mice and Japanese researchers at the Biomedical Research Laboratories have found that Fucoidan caused leukaemia, lymphoma, colorectal and stomach cancer cells to self-destruct. It has also been found to have significant immune boosting effects, and can even reduce blood cholesterol levels and is effective in cases of meningitis. Fucoidan is found in two forms: F-fucoidan, a complex sulphated polysaccharide containing the sulphuric ester L-fucose; and U-fucoidan containing the trace elements galactose, xylose, and about 20- per cent glucuronic acid. About 4 per cent of the dry weight of seaweed is fucoidan.

Lymphoma is divided into two classes, Hodgkins and non-Hodgkins, which are in turn further classified into B-cell and T-cell groups.

’Some forms of B-cell lymphoma are especially resistant to standard treatment and thus new therapies are needed’, said Professor Mohammad Irhimeh adding, ’in this study, we looked at a new treatment strategy using novel active compounds derived from a natural source seaweed.’

Clinical Trials are planned.

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