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Definition of Donor lymphocyte infusion

Donor lymphocyte infusion: (DLI) A cancer treatment in which lymphocytes from a bone marrow donor are infused into the person who received the original bone marrow transplant. The goal of donor lymphocyte infusion is to induce a remission of the cancer by a process called the graft-versus-tumor (GVT) effect. Donor lymphocyte infusion is basically meant to boost the GVT effect. The donor lymphocytes, which are T cells, attack and kill residual cancer cells. That is the strategy.

Donor lymphocyte infusion has mainly been used to treat relapsed chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML). Patients with relapsed acute leukemia, chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), myelodysplasia (MDS), Hodgkin disease, non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), and multiple myeloma have also been treated by donor leukocyte infusion.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=39474
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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