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Ann Oncol. 2009 Apr;20(4):775-9. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdn697. Epub 2009 Jan 29.

The role of immune suppression and HHV-8 in the increasing incidence of HIV-associated multicentric Castleman's disease.

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Department of Medical Oncology, Barts and the London Medical School, London, UK.



In HIV cohorts with access to highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), the incidence of Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) is falling; however, the incidence of multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD) in HIV has not previously been described.


The incidence of HIV-associated MCD was calculated from a prospective HIV database with 56 202 patient-years of follow-up and compared with KS. Univariate and multivariate analyses were carried out to identify factors associated with MCD. Plasma human herpesvirus (HHV)-8 DNA levels were measured in HIV-seropositive individuals with newly diagnosed MCD (n = 24), KS (n = 72), HIV-associated lymphoma (n = 74) and HIV-positive controls (n = 53).


From 24 cases of HIV-associated MCD, the incidence measured 4.3/10,000 patient-years [95% confidence interval (CI) 2.7-6.4]. The incidence in the pre-HAART (1983-1996), early-HAART (1997-2001) and later HAART (2002-2007) eras were 2.3 (95% CI 0.02-4.2), 2.8 (95% CI 0.9-6.5) and 8.3 (95% CI 4.6-12.6), respectively, representing a statistically significant increase over time (P < 0.05). In contrast, from 1180 cases of KS, the incidence in this cohort decreased with time. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that a nadir CD4 count >200/mm(3), increased age, no previous HAART exposure and non-Caucasian ethnicity were all associated with an increased risk of MCD. Plasma HHV-8 DNA levels were higher in patients with newly diagnosed MCD than with KS, lymphomas or HIV-positive controls (Mann-Whitney U-test, P < 0.0001).


The incidence of HIV-associated MCD is increasing. It appears to occur more frequently in older HIV-positive individuals with well-preserved immune function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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