Extranodal natural killer (NK)/T-cell lymphoma is a rare and aggressive type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. It is characterized by the proliferation of NK cells or, less commonly, T-cells, at sites outside of the lymph nodes. The disease is associated with the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), which is thought to play a key role in the transformation of NK cells.
Types of Extranodal Natural Killer
There are two main types of extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma: nasal type and non-nasal type. The nasal type is the most common and it typically involves the nasal cavity, nasopharynx, paranasal sinuses, and palate. The non-nasal type can affect any part of the body, including the skin, gastrointestinal tract, testes, and central nervous system.
Why do people get Extranodal Natural Killer?
The exact cause of extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma is not known. However, it is strongly associated with the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), suggesting that infection with this virus may play a role in its development. Other potential risk factors include genetic predisposition and exposure to certain environmental factors. It is also more common in people from Asia and Central and South America, suggesting that there may be a geographical or ethnic component to its occurrence.