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Semin Cancer Biol. 2016 Aug;39:26-31. doi: 10.1016/j.semcancer.2016.08.001. Epub 2016 Aug 18.

Genetic drivers of NF-κB deregulation in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

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Institute for Cancer Genetics, Department of Pathology and Cell Biology, Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, United States. Electronic address:
Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02215, United States.


Diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is the most common form of B cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma worldwide and comprises a heterogeneous group of malignancies that originate from the malignant transformation of germinal center (GC) B cells. Over the past decade, significant improvement has been achieved in our understanding of the molecular pathogenesis underlying this disease, thanks in part to the implementation of powerful genomic technologies allowing genome-wide structural and functional analyses. These studies revealed the presence of multiple oncogenic alterations dysregulating signal transduction pathways that are normally required for the normal biology of the cells from which these tumors are derived. Among the pathways identified as recurrent targets of genetic lesions in DLBCL, NF-κB has emerged as a central player in the development and maintenance of this disease, particularly in the less curable, activated B cell (ABC)- like subtype. These lesions reveal vulnerabilities of the lymphoma cells that can be exploited for the design of more rationale therapeutic approaches. The purpose of this review is to summarize recent progresses in understanding the role of NF-κB deregulation in the pathogenesis of DLBCL, with emphasis on the genetic basis underlying its aberrant activation, in relationship to the normal biology of B lymphocytes, and the modelling of these lesions in the mouse.


DLBCL; Genetic lesions; Germinal center; NF-κB

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