Radiobiology of radioimmunotherapy: targeting CD20 B-cell antigen in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2004 Aug 1;59(5):1274-87. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2004.02.065.


The radiobiology of radioimmunotherapy is an important determinant of both the toxicity and the efficacy associated with the treatment of B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma with radiolabeled anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies. The properties of the target, CD20, and the mechanisms of action of both the monoclonal antibodies and the associated exponentially decreasing low-dose-rate radiotherapy are described. The radiation dose and dose-rate effects are discussed and related to both the tumor responses and normal organ toxicity. Finally, the use of either unlabeled or radiolabeled anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies as a component of combined modality therapy (including the sequential or concurrent use of sensitizers) and future directions of the field are discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use*
  • Antigens, CD20 / immunology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cyclophosphamide / administration & dosage
  • Doxorubicin / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Iodine Radioisotopes / therapeutic use
  • Lymphoma, B-Cell / radiotherapy*
  • Prednisone / administration & dosage
  • Radiation-Sensitizing Agents / therapeutic use
  • Radiobiology
  • Radioimmunotherapy / methods*
  • Vincristine / administration & dosage
  • Yttrium Radioisotopes / therapeutic use


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antigens, CD20
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Iodine Radioisotopes
  • Radiation-Sensitizing Agents
  • Yttrium Radioisotopes
  • ibritumomab tiuxetan
  • Vincristine
  • Doxorubicin
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • tositumomab I-131
  • Prednisone

Supplementary concepts

  • CHOP protocol