Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL)
MCL is a rare cancer of the B lymphocytes (B cells). The disease is usually aggressive (fast-growing) but it can also behave more indolently (slow-growing) in some patients. The disease is called ‘mantle cell lymphoma’ because the tumor cells originally come from the ‘mantle zone’ of the lymph node. Most patients with MCL will have an overproduction of a protein called cyclin D1 in their lymphoma cells. Some patients will also have higher-than-normal levels of certain proteins that circulate in the blood, such as lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and beta-2 microglobulin.
MCL is usually diagnosed as a late-stage disease that has typically spread to the gastrointestinal tract and bone marrow. MCL usually occurs in middle-aged or older adults.