Exposure to EBV, particularly infectious mononucleosis in the preteen and teenage years, is associated with a 2.5- to 7-fold increased risk of Hodgkins disease.1 EBV DNA can be detected in 25% to 50% of classic Hodgkins disease.2 However, millions of people have been exposed to EBV, while only 7500 cases of Hodgkins disease occur annually in the United States; therefore other factors must be at play. Cytomegalovirus is not associated with a particular cancer but can cause lung, liver, and intestinal infections (among others) in bone marrow transplant recipients. H. pylori is associated with marginal zone lymphoma. Human herpes virus 8 is associated with Kaposis sarcoma, Castlemans disease, and primary effusion lymphoma, particularly in HIV-positive patients. Measles virus is not associated with malignancy.
1. Alexander FE, Jarrett RF, Lawrence D, et al. Risk factors for Hodgkins disease by Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) status: prior infection by EBV and other agents. Br J Cancer 2000;82:1117-21.
2. Weiss LM, Strickler JG, Warnke RA, et al. Epstein-Barr viral DNA in tissues of Hodgkins disease. Am J Pathol 1987;129:86-91.
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