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'If Hamlet give the first or second hit': The development of Burkitt's lymphoma
Date:11/8/2011

l2 effect is dominant.

The results show for the first time that the nature of the "second hit" determines whether the animals are able to mount an immune response against the developing lymphoma. Interestingly, Sexl's collaboration partner Ulrich Jger from the Medical University of Vienna has obtained preliminary data from human patients that are consistent with the results in mice. The collaboration shows once again the value of comparative medicine in understanding the progression of human diseases.

The findings have extremely important consequences for tumour therapy in humans. First, because of the association of high BCL2 levels with tumour development, a number of pharmaceutical companies are currently developing BCL2 inhibitors for use in cancer therapy. As Sexl points out, though, "The inhibitors may have the unwanted effect of preventing the natural immune reaction. It will be important to evaluate the consequences of BCL2 inhibition carefully taking the host immune system fully into account to ensure that the drugs have no harmful side-effects." Secondly, the results may potentially shape future immunotherapeutic approaches, as whether a tumour overexpresses Bcl2 or does not express p53 clearly has a dramatic influence on the course of disease.


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Contact: Prof Veronika Sexl
veronika.sexl@vetmeduni.ac.at
43-125-077-2910
University of Veterinary Medicine -- Vienna
Source:Eurekalert

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