STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE GSCHMEISSNER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Lymphoma lymph cells. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of lymphoblasts from a patient with lymphoblastic lymphoma. This form of cancer is most often found in children and teenagers, and involves the replacement of normal lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) by lymphoblasts. These lymphoblasts develop from lymphocytes, interfering with the patient's normal immune system. This malfunction can then develop into lymphoblastic leukaemia, with excess production of lymphoblasts. Lymph nodes, the spleen and liver can all become enlarged, and the weakening of the immune system allows life-threatening illnesses.
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