Mantle Cell Lymphoma

John Han-Chih Chang, MD and Kenneth Blank, MD
Last Modified: November 1, 2001

Dear OncoLink "Ask the Experts,"
I have a friend whose mother has a rare type of cancer called Mantel cell lymphoma? I can't find any information, which even has the word Mantel in it. Is there anything you can tell me about this type of cancer, or where to find information on it, either here or in a book?  

Kenneth Blank, MD and John Han-Chih Chang, MD, OncoLink Editorial Assistants, respond:

Dear JT:
Thank you for your question.

Mantle cell lymphoma is a subtype of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Lymphoma is a general term for many types of cancer that arise from the lymph cells (lymphocytes). There are two general types of lymphomas: Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's. And, within each of these categories there are many other subtypes.

Mantle cell lymphoma was first described in the early 1990s by a group of 18 expert pathologists who developed a new classification of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma called the REAL classification . (Real stands for Revised European-American Lymphoma classification). Previously mantle cell lymphoma was grouped under the term "small-cleaved cell lymphoma".

Mantle cell lymphoma usually effects older adults who typically present with many sites involved. The treatment is similar as for other intermediate grade non-Hodgkin's lymphomas with chemotherapy and possible radiotherapy.