Impairments in immune cell function in B cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Semin Oncol. 1998 Feb;25(1):27-33.


B cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) is a common clonal B cell leukemia that is often accompanied by a multitude of immune abnormalities. Each immune defect may be linked to several of the common complications affecting B-CLL patients. Furthermore, the combined abnormalities constitute a significant immunodeficiency for each patient. Importantly, some of the immune dysfunctions are potentially very relevant to the in vivo survival status of the leukemic B cell. The elucidation of these abnormalities in the circulating non-malignant immune cells of B-CLL patients has generated important insights into the biology of the disease. This discussion reviews the immune abnormalities of the clonal malignant B cells, the polyclonal B cells, and the immunoregulatory T cells and natural killer cells in B-CLL. In addition, we indicate the potential for immunotherapeutic protocols as innovations in treating this disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibody Formation
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy
  • Killer Cells, Natural / immunology
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / immunology*
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / therapy
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology