Burkitt Lymphoma Programme

Burkitt lymphoma is the most common childhood cancer in equatorial Africa, accounting for some 50% of all pediatric cancer in that region. Most families cannot afford the cost of treatment or even travel to a center capable of providing care. Yet the disease is highly curable, even when resources are limited.

The initial results of the study from 4 centers (Ocean Road Cancer Institute, Kenyatta National Hospital, Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex and University College Hospital) of the first 356 patients were published in the Br J Haematol in 2012. Overall survival is over 60% at 2 years. Two new centers joined the study (St Mary’s Hospital in 2010 and Bugando Medical Centre in 2011). Pathology reviewed and centers switching to cutting needle biopsy with immunophenotyping. Linkage with basic research is possible. To date, 625 patients have been enrolled in the study.