Changes in Epstein-Barr Virus Antibody Titers Associated with Aging

Ronald Glaser, Eric C. Strain, Kathleen L. Tarr, Jane E. Holliday, Roy L. Donnerberg, Janice K. Kiecolt-Glaser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Antibody titers to the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), early antigen (EA) IgG, and virus capsid antigen (VCA) IgG and IgA, were measured in 44 geriatric subjects to determine if the depression in cellular immunity known to be associated with aging affects the expression of latent EBV. Similar assays were performed on plasma obtained from a young adult (medical student) population as a control group. We found that 89% of the geriatric samples were positive for EA IgG, and 83% of the plasma obtained from medical students were positive for EA IgG. One hundred percent of the geriatric subjects were positive for VCA IgG, and 87% of the medical students were positive for VCA IgG. Seven percent of the medical student blood samples were positive for VCA IgA; in contrast, 36% of the blood samples obtained from the geriatrics subjects were positive. Significant differences were also found in the geometric mean titers (GMT) of antibodies to EBV antigens; the GMT to EBV EA and VCA were significantly higher in the geriatric group. The data suggest that there may be some loss of control over latent EBV by the cellular immune response in geriatric individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)352-355
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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