To search for the T-cell abnormality in chronic active Epstein-Barr virus infection (CAEBV), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) load and cytokine gene expressions in T-cell subsets were quantified by using the real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and an EPICS cell sorter. All six patients fullfilled the diagnostic criteria (Immunol Today 1986;7:13). presenting with fever, hepatosplenomegaly, abnormal high titers of anti EBV-antibodies. and increased number of CD3+HLA-DR+ cells, but not, of CD16V56+ cells. There was no mosquito allergy. Clonal expansion of EBV-infected T-cells was indicated in four patients. Quantitative real-time PCR for EBV-DNA in whole peripheral blood from patients al active phases of CAEBV showed higher copy numbers of virus (mean 1.45×105 /ml) than that from patients with acute infectious mononucleosis (IM) (mean 3.08×103 /ml), or with EBV-associated hemophagocytic syndrome (mean 2.95×104 /ml). EBV-DNA was then quantified using the fractionated T-cells obtained from CAEBV patients. CD3+HLADR+ cells contained higher copy numbers of EBV than CD3+HLA-DR cells. The viral copy number well reflected the clinical severity. Quantitative PCR for cytokine genes was also performed using the T-cell fractions. Interferon (IFN)-γ, interleukin (IL)-2, IL10 and transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta genes were expressed at higher levels in CD3+HLA-DR+ cells than in CD3+HLA-DR cells from CAEBV patients. These levels of CD3+HLA-DR+ cells from CAEBV patients were higher than those from acute IM patients, and were comparable to those from patients with EBV+ T-cell leukemia/lymphoma. These results suggest that EBV-infected T-cells may be aberrantly activated to express high levels of both Th 1 and Th2 type cytokines. The deranged cytokine profiles may play an important role in the pathophysiolgy of chronic mononucleosis.
|Issue number||11 PART II|
|Publication status||Published - 2000|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology