Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a ubiquitous member of the herpesvirus family that is associated with a variety of lymphomas and lymphoproliferative diseases. It encodes a multitude of genes that drive proliferation or confer resistance to cell death. Among these are two key viral proteins which mimic the effects of the activated cellular signaling proteins. EBV-associated lymphomas include Burkitt's lymphoma; natural killer (NK)/T-cell lymphoma, lymphoma and lymphoproliferative diseases in immunocompromized populations, and Hodgkin's lymphoma. The character of the viral association differs among these entities with some consistently associated with EBV in all populations and all parts of the world, and others associated with the virus only in particular circumstances. An example of the former is nasal NK/T-cell lymphoma, while an example of the latter is Burkitts lymphoma. The pattern of viral gene expression also varies among tumor types with different viral genes playing key roles in different tumors and conferring sensitivity to immune surveillance. Thus some of the post-transplant lymphoproliferative diseases are exquisitely sensitive to CD8 T-cell immunosurveillance, while other tumors such as Burkitt's lymphoma may be nearly impervious to such surveillance. Knowledge of the EBV association is not only important for understanding the pathogenesis of these tumors, but is increasingly important for diagnosis, monitoring and treatment.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Reviews in Clinical and Experimental Hematology|
|State||Published - Dec 2003|
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