Fulminant anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL) concomitant with primary cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection, and human herpes virus 8 (HHV-8) infection together with Epstein-Barr-virus (EBV) reactivation in a patient with asymptomatic HIV-infection

Sven Grützmeier, Anna Porwit, Corinna Schmitt, Eric Sandström, Börje Åkerlund, Ingemar Ernberg

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Abstract

Background: Most malignant lymphomas in HIV-patients are caused by reactivation of EBV-infection. Some lymphomas have a very rapid fulminant course. HHV-8 has also been reported to be a cause of lymphoma. The role of CMV in the development of lymphoma is not clear, though both CMV and HHV-8 have been reported in tissues adjacent to the tumour in Burkitt lymphoma patients. Here we present a patient with asymptomatic HIV infection, that contracted a primary cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and human herpes virus 8 (HHV-8) infection. Three weeks before onset of symptoms the patient had unprotected sex which could be possible source of his CMV and also HHV-8 infection He deteriorated rapidly and died with a generalized anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). Methods: A Caucasian homosexual male with asymptomatic human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection contracted a primary cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and human herpes virus 8 (HHV-8) infection. He deteriorated rapidly and died with a generalized anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). Clinical and laboratory records were compiled. Immunohistochemistry was performed on lymphoid tissues, a liver biopsy, a bone marrow aspirate and the spleen during the illness and at autopsy. Serology and PCR for HIV, CMV, EBV, HHV-1-3 and 6-8 was performed on blood drawn during the course of disease. Results: The patient presented with an acute primary CMV infection. Biopsies taken 2 weeks before death showed a small focus of ALCL in one lymph node of the neck. Autopsy demonstrated a massive infiltration of ALCL in lymph nodes, liver, spleen and bone marrow. Blood samples confirmed primary CMV- infection, a HHV-8 infection together with reactivation of Epstein- Barr-virus (EBV). Conclusion: Primary CMV-infection and concomitant HHV-8 infection correlated with reactivation of EBV. We propose that these two viruses influenced the development and progression of the lymphoma. Quantitative PCR blood analysis for EBV, CMV and HHV-8 could be valuable in diagnosis and treatment of this type of very rapidly developing lymphoma. It is also a reminder of the importance of prevention and prophylaxis of several infections by having protected sex.

Original languageEnglish
Article number46
JournalInfectious Agents and Cancer
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Aug 22
Externally publishedYes

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Cancer and Oncology

Keywords

  • ALCL
  • CMV-DNA
  • EBV latency
  • EBV-DNA
  • HHV-8 DNA
  • HHV-8 infection
  • Malignant lymphoma
  • Primary CMV-infection
  • Unprotected sex

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