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Increased Risk of Malignant Lymphoma Indicated by Elevated Epstein-Barr Virus Antibodies: A Prospective Study

Tuula Lehtinen, Jukka Lumio, Joakim Dillner, Matti Hakama, Paul Knekt, Matti Lehtinen, Lyly Teppo and Pauli Leinikki
Cancer Causes & Control
Vol. 4, No. 3 (May, 1993), pp. 187-193
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3552842
Page Count: 7
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Increased Risk of Malignant Lymphoma Indicated by Elevated Epstein-Barr Virus Antibodies: A Prospective Study
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Abstract

We estimated Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) antibody-associated relative risks (RR) of malignant lymphoma/leukemia within a cohort of 39,000 healthy Finnish adults followed up for 12 years. Antibody analyses to EBV capsid antigen (VCA), early antigen (EA), and nuclear antigens (EBNA, EBNA1, and EBNA2) were based on concomitantly evaluated ELISA techniques. No increased risk was associated with mere EBV seropositivity. However, elevated EBV EA and EBNA antibody levels were associated with a statistically significant excess risk of malignant lymphoma/leukemia (RREA = 3.4, 95 percent confidence interval [CI] = 1.0-11.0; RREBNA = 4.5, CI = 1.2-16.9). These elevated antibody responses may be due either to destruction of neoplastic EBV positive B-cells and/or to activation of latent EBV infection early in the lymphomagenesis.

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