Burkitt and Burkitt-Like Lymphomas: a Systematic Review

Curr Oncol Rep. 2020 Mar 6;22(4):33. doi: 10.1007/s11912-020-0898-8.


Purpose of review: Burkitt's lymphoma and its leukemic form (Burkitt cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia) are a highly aggressive disease. We review the classification, clinical presentation, histology, cytogenetics, and the treatment of the disease.

Recent findings: Burkitt's lymphoma might be associated with tumor lysis syndrome which is a potentially fatal complication that occurs spontaneously or upon initiation of chemotherapy. Major improvements were made in the treatment of pediatric and adults population using short-course dose-intensive chemotherapy regimens, usually 1 week after a prephase induction. Addition of Rituximab to chemotherapy has become a standard of care. Relapsed/refractory disease has a very poor prognosis and the benefit from autologous/allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant remains uncertain. Rituximab-based short-course dose-intensive chemotherapy is the standard of care of Burkitt's lymphoma even in the immunodeficiency-related form.

Keywords: Burkitt’s lymphoma; C-MYC; CODOX-M/IVAC; DA-EPOCH-R; Endemic form; GMALL-B-ALL/NHL; HOVON; Immunodeficiency-related; L3ALL; LMB; Sporadic form; T(8;14); Tumor lysis syndrome; hyperCVAD.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, CD20 / metabolism
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use*
  • Burkitt Lymphoma / genetics
  • Burkitt Lymphoma / metabolism
  • Burkitt Lymphoma / therapy*
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 14 / genetics
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 8 / genetics
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*
  • Humans
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-6 / metabolism
  • Rituximab / administration & dosage*
  • Translocation, Genetic


  • Antigens, CD20
  • BCL6 protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-6
  • Rituximab