ABOUT BLOOD CANCERS


Hematologic malignancies are blood cancers that begin in blood forming tissue or cells of the immune system, and include diseases such: as leukemias, lymphomas, and multiple myeloma. While there are variations depending on the specific disease type, incidence rates are fairly consistent among men and women and by ethnicity with incidence rates increasing with age of the population.

In the United States:

A person is diagnosed with a blood cancer EVERY 3 MINUTES

A person dies from a blood cancer EVERY 10 MINUTES

Approximately 1.2 million people are living with, or in remission from, a blood cancer.

New Cases (2014) Deaths (2014)
Leukemia 52,400 24,100
Lymphoma 80,000 20,200
Myeloma 24,100 11,100

Currently, combination chemotherapy (with or without immunotherapy) is the first-line treatment option for most hematologic malignancies. These treatments generally have serious short and long-term side effects, and the degree of treatment efficacy varies widely by indication. For the many patients who relapse, existing second and third line therapies such as novel immunotherapy, radiation and stem cell transplantation also come with significant issues.

Information on Lymphomas

Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL)

Where
Cancer of the the lymphatic (immune) system

What
85% of NHL starts in B-lymphocytes (B-cells), and 15% in T-lymphocytes (T-cells). These abnormal cells collect, spread, and form tumors.

Impact
There are over 70,000 new cases each year. Five-year survival rate in US is 69%.


Hodgkin’s lymphoma (HL)

Where
Cancer of the the lymphatic (immune) system

What
Lymphoma cells multiply and form tumors in the lymph nodes, and other tissue, impairing the immune system’s ability to fight infection. HL involves the Reed-Sternberg cells.

Impact
There are an estimated 9,000+ new cases each year. Treatment is limited to radiation and chemotherapy, which are non-specific, costly, and have severe side effects.

While the 5-year survival rates for both HL & NHL are high, there are subsets of patients who require new or specialized treatment options. Additionally, HL & NHL survivors are at an increased risk of developing a second primary cancer in their lifetimes.

Information on Leukemia

Where
Cancer of blood cells and blood forming tissues

What
The uncontrolled accumulation of immature or nonfunctional blood cells impairing the ability of the body to produce healthy blood cells in the bone marrow.

Impact
There are an estimated 52,400 new cases per year. The overall 5-year survival rate in the US is 60%. However, survival rates vary significantly according to age at diagnosis, gender, race and type of leukemia.

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