Getting familiar with these terms can help to understand and discuss acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and lymphoblastic lymphoma (LBL)
Acetaminophen: A type of medicine that can help reduce pain or a fever.
ALL: Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a type of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow, resulting in too many immature white blood cells.
Allergic reaction: A sensitivity reaction to a normally harmless substance—called an allergen—that may cause symptoms such as itching or inflammation. Sometimes, in ALL or LBL treatment, this is called a “hypersensitivity reaction.”
Amino acid: Small components, that when joined together, make up proteins.
Antibody: To help protect the body, antibodies recognize antigens and respond by triggering the immune system.
Antigen: A substance that causes the body to make a specific immune response. Antigens can include toxins, chemicals, bacteria, and viruses. Body tissues and cells, including cancer cells, also have antigens on them that can cause an immune response.
Asparaginase: A naturally occurring enzyme used to help break down asparagine in the blood. Asparaginase therapy is used as a key component in ALL and LBL treatment plans because it helps prevent cancer cells from getting the asparagine they need to survive.
Asparagine: An amino acid used to create important proteins and help cells grow in the body.
Blood cell: Tiny cells in our blood that carry out different jobs, like fighting infections or carrying oxygen.
Bone marrow: The soft, spongy center of bones where blood cells are made.
Chemotherapy: A powerful form of medicine used to target and kill cancer cells, but can also affect healthy cells.
Clinical trial: A medical study that tests new treatments to see if they are safe and effective for the greater community.
E. coli: A type of bacteria that is naturally found in the body. Most types of E. coli bacteria are not harmful and help the body digest food and make vitamins.
Enzyme: A type of protein that speeds up chemical reactions in the body.
Erwinia chrysanthemi: A type of bacteria usually found in plants.
Hematologist: A doctor who specializes in treating blood disorders.
Hypersensitivity reaction: Also called an allergic reaction, hypersensitivity reactions happen when the immune system overreacts to something that is usually harmless—like foods, medicines, or things in the environment.
LBL: Lymphoblastic lymphoma (LBL) is a type of cancer that affects the lymph nodes or thymus in the body. In LBL, there are too many immature white blood cells, and they can spread to other places in the body.
Leukemia cell: An abnormal type of white blood cell that builds up in the blood and bone marrow and can harm the body.
Leukocyte: A type of blood cell that is made in the bone marrow and found in the blood and lymph tissue. Leukocytes, also called white blood cells, are part of the body's immune system and help fight infection and other diseases.
Lymph node: A small bean-shaped tissue structure that is part of the body’s immune system and helps to filter substances that travel through the lymphatic fluid. Lymph nodes contain lymphocytes (white blood cells) and are found throughout the body.
Lymphoblast: Immature white blood cells that can grow and become leukemia cells.
Lymphocyte: A type of white blood cell that helps the body fight infection and disease.
Lymphoma cell: An abnormal type of white blood cell that builds up in the lymph nodes and can harm the body.
Oncologist: A doctor who specializes in treating people with cancer.
Platelet: A tiny, disc-shaped piece of cell that is found in the blood and spleen. Platelets are pieces of very large cells in the bone marrow and help form blood clots to slow or stop bleeding.
Red blood cell: A type of blood cell that is made in the bone marrow and found in the blood. Red blood cells contain a protein called hemoglobin, which carries oxygen from the lungs to all parts of the body.
Relapse: To return to a previous, or worse, condition after making an improvement.
Side effect: A reaction, like feeling nauseous or very tired, that may occur when treatment also affects healthy parts of the body.
Support group: A group of people, sometimes called advocates, with similar experiences who come together to help and encourage one another.
Thymus: An organ in the chest, behind the breastbone, which makes white blood cells, called lymphocytes, that protect the body against infections.
White blood cell: A part of the body’s immune system. These cells are also called leukocytes and help protect the body from infection and disease.