The association between epstein-barr virus and chinese hodgkin's disease

Authors

  • Xiao-Ge Zhou,

    1. Laboratory of Immunopathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Finsensgade 12, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
    2. Department of Pathology, Beijing Hospital, Beijing, China
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  • Stephen J. Hamilton-Dutoit,

    1. Laboratory of Immunopathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Finsensgade 12, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
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  • Gorm Pallesen,

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratory of Immunopathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Finsensgade 12, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark
    • Laboratory of Immunopathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Finsensgade 12, DK-8000 Aarhus C, Denmark. Fax: +45 86182386
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  • Qin-Han Yan

    1. Department of Pathology, Beijing Railway General Hospital, Beijing, China
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Abstract

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) can be detected in Hodgkin and Reed-Sternberg (HRS) cells in about one-half of cases of Hodgkin's disease (HD) in Western countries. To determine whether EBV is also associated with HD in a developing country such as China, we studied paraffin sections from 28 Chinese cases of HD for expression of latent membrane protein-1 (LMP-1) and EBV-encoded small RNA (EBER-I), using immuno-histology and RNA/RNA in situ hybridization respectively. The cases were selected from a large series of Chinese lymphomas following histological and immunophenotypical revision. EBV gene expression was found in HRS cells in 17/28 cases, and was related to histological sub-type, being present in 10/11 of mixed cellularity, 6/14 nodular sclerosis, 0/1 lymphocytic predominance, 0/1 lymphocytic depletion, and 1/1 unclassified HD. The 2 methods for detecting EBV gene expression gave similar results, except in one case of nodular sclerosis, in which HRS cells were negative for EBER-1, but weakly positive for LMP-1. In 5/12 cases with EBER-negative HRS cells, rare small or medium-sized lymphocytes expressed EBER-1 but not LMP-1. These results suggest that (i) Chinese HD is frequently associated with EBV; (ii) the proportional frequency and sub-type distribution of EBV-positive HD are similar in China and in the West; (iii) both LMP-1 immunohistology and EBER in situ hybridization reliably detect EBV in HRS cells in routine biopsies, but the former is simpler and less resource-consuming to perform.

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