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Glossary

Here you will find definitions and meanings of some of the most frequently used terms on the site.

 

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A chromosomal abnormality in which part or all of a single chromosome has been lost


Is the process by which stem cells give rise to functional cells of a single blood cell line; differentiation of stem cells forms red cells, platelets and white cells (neutrophils, monocytes, eosinophils, basophils and lymphocytes).


The abbreviation for deoxyribonucleic acid, the genetic material in the cell. DNA is
made up of a sugar-phosphate backbone with ladder-like “steps” composed of purines
and pyrimidines (building blocks of nucleic acids). The sequence of the purines and
pyrimidines in the DNA is responsible for passing genetic information to new cells
during the process of cell division; for passing genetic information from one
generation to the next during reproduction; and for providing the instructions for
building proteins, which in turn carry out the major functions of a cell. A mutation is
generally a change in or loss of the sequence of the purines or pyrimidines of the
DNA. Mutations can lead to cell death, to changes in the way a cell functions or, in
some cases, to cancer.


A therapy that involves giving lymphocytes from the original stem cell donor to a
patient who has had an allogeneic bone marrow transplant with a relapse of disease. DLI may induce an immune reaction against the patient’s cancer cells. This therapy has been most effective in patients with chronic myeloid leukaemia who relapse after transplantation but this therapy is being studied to treat patients with other blood cancers.


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