Timeline of lymphoma

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This is a timeline of lymphoma, describing especially major discoveries and advances in treatment against the disease.

Big picture[edit]

Year/period Key developments
19th Century The presence of lymphoma in western medical literature is born after the works of people like Thomas Hodgkin and Samuel Wilks. Hodgkin's lymphoma is the first lymphoma to be described.
1900–1950s It is found that radiation therapy can cure some patients with Hodgkin lymphoma, one of two major classes of lymphomas. When it is discovered that radiating larger parts of the body improves cure rates, physicians begin increasing the size of the radiation fields. Radiotherapy starts to prove successful as a treatment against Hodgkin's lymphoma in the 1940s.[1] However, long-term effects of radiation to the chest (including cardiovascular disease and second cancers) are later recognized, and efforts start to be taken to reduce radiation exposure to healthy tissue.[2]
1960s–1970s Very effective treatments for Hodgkin's lymphoma are developed in this period.[3] Chemotherapeutic agents are combined into regimens capable of eradicating and even disseminating the disease.[4] Combination of chemotherapy and high-energy radiation therapy are introduced.[5]
1990s–present Modern era of treatment for Hodgkin's lymphoma, focusing on reducing both toxicity and duration of chemotherapy.[4] Lymphomas developed in 566,000 people in 2012 and caused 305,000 deaths worldwide.[6] They comprise the seventh-most common form of cancers making up the 3–4% of them.[7]

Full timeline[edit]

Year/period Type of event Event Location
1666 Development Italian biologist Marcello Malpighi publishes De viscerum structuru exercitatio anatomica, where he describes what later will be known as Hodgkin's lymphoma.[8]
1832 Development British physician Thomas Hodgkin presents a paper describing seven patients with painless enlargement of the lymph nodes, and including autopsy findings and illustrations from one of the patients.[8] London, United Kingdom
1856 Book British physician Samuel Wilks publishes Cases of lardaceous diseases and some allied affections with remarks, describing similar cases to those presented by Thomas Hodgkin. Wilks honors Hodgkin by eponymously referring to this disease as Hodgkin's lymphoma.[8]
1871 Development Billroth reports the first case of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma[9]
1872–1878 Development Microscopic descriptions of Hodgkin's lymphoma are first described.[8]
1878 Development W. S. Greenfield first publishes drawings of the pathognomonic giant cells, later called Reed–Sternberg cells.[10]
1894 Development Osler first mentions use of chemotherapy for lymphoma in his work Textbook of Medicine.[11]
1898 Development Austrian pathologist Carl Sternberg first describes in detail giant cells (Reed–Sternberg cells).[12] Germany
1902 Development American physician Dorothy Reed Mendenhall independently describes Reed-Sternberg cells.[12] United States
1910 Discovery Albert Cook, a missionary doctor in Africa, reports a child with a large jaw tumor, in what becomes the first description of Burkitt lymphoma.[13] Uganda
1925 Discovery Follicular lymphoma is first described.[14]
1932 Development Chevalier and Bernard describe the use of radiation therapy to treat Hodgkin's disease.[1]
1939 Development E. Epstein reports better survival prognosis for women against Hodgkin's lymphoma in his book Sex as factor in the prognosis of Hodgkins disease.[12]
1942 Development Gall and Mallory propose the first morphological classification for lymphoma.[9]
1944 Discovery Lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma, also known as Waldenström's macroglobulinemia, is first described by Swedish oncologist Jan G. Waldenström.[15] Sweden
1949 Treatment First chemotherapy drug (nitrogen mustard) is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of Hodgkin's lymphoma.[2] United States
1949–1956 Discovery After shielding a mouse's spleen, researchers discover that the body recruits stem cells, which are found in the spleen and bone marrow, to protect and heal itself from radiation damage.[2]
1956 Development American chemist Henry Rapoport proposes the first classification of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma based on cellular morphology.[9]
1963 Treatment First program for combination of chemotherapy agents against Hodgkin's lymphoma is designed, combining cyclophosphamide, vincristine, methotrexate, and prednisone (MOMP).[16]
1965 Organization The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) is founded as an intergovernmental agency forming part of the World Health Organization of the United Nations. Its role is to conduct and coordinate research into the causes of cancer.[17] Lyon, France
1966 Discovery It is discovered that Hodgkin's lymphoma spreads through the body in an orderly and somewhat predictable way. This implies that prognosis and appropriate treatment can be determined based on the extent of the spread.[2]
1967 Treatment New chemotherapy regimen called MOPP (mechlorethamine, vincristine, procarbazine and prednisone) is found to cure more than 50 percent of patients with advanced Hodgkin's lymphoma.[2]
1974 Treatment Antibiotic doxorubicin is approved by FDA as part of combination chemotherapy against Hodgkin's lymphoma.[2] United States
1975 Discovery Researchers first identify lymphoblastic lymphoma.[18]
1975 Treatment New chemotherapy combination of doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine (known as ABVD) is found to be more effective than the older MOPP combination regimen, and causes fewer side effects.[2]
1977 Discovery Adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma, a distinct subtype of lymphoma, is reported.[18] Japan
1983 Discovery MALT lymphoma is first described by Isaacson and Wright.[19]
1985 Treatment Bone marrow transplantation is successfully used to cure lymphoma.[2]
1987 Discovery Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) DNA is first reported in Reed–Sternberg cells of a proportion of Hodgkin's lymphoma cases.[8]
1990 Organization The International Lymphoma Study Group is founded.[8]
1991 Organization Lymphoma Research Foundation of America (LRFA) is founded.[12] Los Angeles, United States
1992 Discovery Mantle cell lymphoma subtype is first recognized.[20]
1992 Treatment German Hodgkin Study Group (GHSG) develops the BEACOPP regimen for patients with advanced Hodgkin's lymphoma, involving the use of chemotherapy agents bleomycin, etoposide, adriamycin, cyclophosphamide, oncovin, procarbazine and prednisone.[1][21] Germany
1994 Development The Revised European-American Classification of Lymphoid Neoplasms (REAL) is proposed as a new classification for non Hodgkin's lymphoma, taking into account immunologic, genetic and clinical characteristics of the disorders in addition to histopathologic characteristics of the tumor cells.[22]
1994 Organization Cure for Lymphoma Foundation is established.[12] New York City, United States
1994 Discovery Primary effusion lymphoma type is first recognized.[23]
1995 Discovery Researchers discover that lymphocyte transfusion from a biologically matched, healthy donor to a patient with chronic myelogenous leukemia can induce the disease into remission.[2]
1997 Treatment FDA approves rituximab, the first molecularly targeted cancer drug, to treat patients with B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma that no longer responds to other treatments[24] United States
1997 Discovery ALK+ large B-cell lymphoma is first reported.[25]
2001 Discovery Scientists discover that diffuse large B-cell lymphoma – the most common form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma – is actually two distinct diseases, each with its own genetic profile.[2]
2002 Treatment FDA approves ibritumomab tiuxetan, which combines radioactive material with a specific protein. The radioactive material kills the cells with which it comes in contact, while sparing the healthy surrounding tissue. It is the first radioimmunotherapy introduced to treat lymphoma.[2] United States
2008 Discovery WHO classification recognizes primary mediastinal (thymic) large B cell lymphoma type.[26][27]
2013–2014 Drug Ibrutinib is approved by the FDA for patients with mantle cell lymphoma or chronic lymphocytic leukemia that progresses despite other standard therapies.[2] United States

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Hodgkin's Lymphoma History". 2009-11-24. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Progress & Timeline". Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Lymphoma - Hodgkin - Treatment Options". 2012-06-26. Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  4. ^ a b Connors, Joseph M. (2003). "Hodgkin's Lymphoma: The Hazards of Success". Journal of Clinical Oncology. 21 (18): 3388–3390. doi:10.1200/JCO.2003.07.001. PMID 12900526. Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  5. ^ Schaapveld, Michael; Aleman, Berthe M.P.; Van Eggermond, Anna M.; Janus, Cécile P.M.; Krol, Augustinus D.G.; Van Der Maazen, Richard W.M.; Roesink, Judith; Raemaekers, John M.M.; De Boer, Jan Paul; Zijlstra, Josée M.; Van Imhoff, Gustaaf W.; Petersen, Eefke J.; Poortmans, Philip M.P.; Beijert, Max; Lybeert, Marnix L.; Mulder, Ina; Visser, Otto; Louwman, Marieke W.J.; Krul, Inge M.; Lugtenburg, Pieternella J.; Van Leeuwen, Flora E. (2015). "Second Cancer Risk Up to 40 Years after Treatment for Hodgkin's Lymphoma". New England Journal of Medicine. 373 (26): 2499–2511. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1505949. hdl:2066/152700. PMID 26699166.
  6. ^ World Cancer Report 2014. World Health Organization. 2014. pp. Chapter 5.13. ISBN 978-9283204299.
  7. ^ Marcus, Robert (2013). Lymphoma : pathology, diagnosis and treatment (Second ed.). p. 1. ISBN 9781107010598.
  8. ^ a b c d e f Lakhtakia, R; Burney, I (2015). "A Historical Tale of Two Lymphomas". Sultan Qaboos Univ Med J. 15 (2): e202–6. PMC 4450782. PMID 26052452.
  9. ^ a b c Pollock, Raphael (2008). Advanced Therapy in Surgical Oncology. p. 236. ISBN 9781550091267.
  10. ^ Hoffman, Ronald (2012-11-05). Hematology: Basic Principles and Practice, Expert Consult Premium Edition. p. 1138. ISBN 978-1455740413.
  11. ^ Specht, Lena (2010-09-10). Radiotherapy for Hodgkin Lymphoma. p. 45. ISBN 9783540789444.
  12. ^ a b c d e "Hodgkin's Disease - Historical Timeline". Archived from the original on 23 May 2010. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  13. ^ Robertson, Erle S. (2012-12-09). Burkitt's Lymphoma. p. 1. ISBN 9781461443131.
  14. ^ van Besien, K; Schouten, H (2007). "Follicular lymphoma: a historical overview". Leuk Lymphoma. 48 (2): 232–43. doi:10.1080/10428190601059746. PMID 17325883.
  15. ^ Ries, C. A. (1988). "Waldenström's Macroglobulinemia — Clinical and Pathological Report of a Case Resembling Multiple Myeloma". New England Journal of Medicine. 258 (3): 1293–1296. doi:10.1056/NEJM195806262582604. PMC 1026101. PMID 3129876.
  16. ^ Heinz, Beverley (2005). Trends in Hodgkin's Disease Research. ISBN 9781594543401.
  17. ^ "International Agency for Research on Cancer". Retrieved 28 August 2016.
  18. ^ a b Aisenberg, Alan C. (2000). "Historical review of lymphomas". British Journal of Haematology. 109 (3): 466–476. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2141.2000.01988.x.
  19. ^ Troppan, K; Wenzl, K; Neumeister, P; Deutsch, A (2015). "Molecular Pathogenesis of MALT Lymphoma". Gastroenterol Res Pract. 2015: 1–10. doi:10.1155/2015/102656. PMC 4397421. PMID 25922601.
  20. ^ "Aggressive Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (Mantle Cell Lymphoma) On The Rise". Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  21. ^ Diehl, V (2006). "Could BEACOPP be the new standard for the treatment of advanced Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL)?". Cancer Invest. 24 (7): 713–7. doi:10.1080/07357900600981380. PMID 17118782.
  22. ^ "Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma History". 2009-11-23. Retrieved 23 August 2016.
  23. ^ "Primary Effusion Lymphoma". Retrieved 25 August 2016.
  24. ^ Grillo-López, AJ; White, CA; Dallaire, BK; Varns, CL; Shen, CD; Wei, A; Leonard, JE; McClure, A; Weaver, R; Cairelli, S; Rosenberg, J (2000). "Rituximab". Curr Pharm Biotechnol. 1 (1): 1–9. PMID 11467356.
  25. ^ Morgan EA, Nascimento AF (2012). "Anaplastic lymphoma kinase-positive large B-cell lymphoma: an underrecognized aggressive lymphoma". Adv Hematol. 2012: 1–6. doi:10.1155/2012/529572. PMC 3299366. PMID 22474449.CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link)
  26. ^ Swerdlow, Steven H.; International Agency for Research on Cancer; World Health Organization (2008). WHO classification of tumours of haematopoietic and lymphoid tissues. World Health Organization classification of tumours. 2 (4th ed.). International Agency for Research on Cancer. ISBN 9789283224310.
  27. ^ Jaffe, ES; Harris NL; Vardiman JW; Campo E; Arber DA (2011). Hematopathology (1st ed.). Elsevier Saunders. ISBN 9780721600406.