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Non-Hodgkin lymphoma incidence in the Swiss HIV Cohort Study before and after highly active antiretroviral therapy

Polesel, Jerrya; Clifford, Gary Mb; Rickenbach, Martinc; Dal Maso, Luiginoa; Battegay, Manueld; Bouchardy, Christinee; Furrer, Hansjakobf; Hasse, Barbarag; Levi, Fabioh,i; Probst-Hensch, Nicole Mj; Schmid, Patrickk; Franceschi, Silviab; the Swiss HIV Cohort Study

doi: 10.1097/QAD.0b013e3282f2705d
Epidemiology and Social: CONCISE COMMUNICATION

Objective: To assess the long-term effect of HAART on non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) incidence in people with HIV (PHIV).

Design: Follow-up of the Swiss HIV Cohort Study (SHCS).

Methods: Between 1984 and 2006, 12 959 PHIV contributed a total of 75 222 person-years (py), of which 36 787 were spent under HAART. Among these PHIV, 429 NHL cases were identified from the SHCS dataset and/or by record linkage with Swiss Cantonal Cancer Registries. Age- and gender-standardized incidence was calculated and Cox regression was used to estimate hazard ratios (HR).

Results: NHL incidence reached 13.6 per 1000 py in 1993–1995 and declined to 1.8 in 2002–2006. HAART use was associated with a decline in NHL incidence [HR = 0.26; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.20–0.33], and this decline was greater for primary brain lymphomas than other NHL. Among non-HAART users, being a man having sex with men, being 35 years of age or older, or, most notably, having low CD4 cell counts at study enrolment (HR = 12.26 for < 50 versus ≥ 350 cells/μl; 95% CI, 8.31–18.07) were significant predictors of NHL onset. Among HAART users, only age was significantly associated with NHL risk. The HR for NHL declined steeply in the first months after HAART initiation (HR = 0.46; 95% CI, 0.27–0.77) and was 0.12 (95% CI, 0.05–0.25) 7 to10 years afterwards.

Conclusions: HAART greatly reduced the incidence of NHL in PHIV, and the influence of CD4 cell count on NHL risk. The beneficial effect remained strong up to 10 years after HAART initiation.

From the aEpidemiology and Biostatics Unit, Aviano Cancer Center, Aviano, Italy

bInternational Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France

cCoordination and Data Center, Swiss HIV Cohort Study, Lausanne

dDivision of Infectious Diseases, University Hospital Basel, Basel

eCancer Registry of the Canton of Geneva, Geneva

fKilink und Poliklinik für Infektiologie Universitätsspital, Bern

gDivision of Infectious Diseases and Hospital Epidemiology, University Hospital Zurich, Zurich

hCancer Registry of the Canton of Vaud, University of Lausanne, Lausanne

iCancer Registry of the Canton of Neuchâtel, Neuchâtel

jCancer Registry of the Canton of Zurich, Zurich

kKantonsspital FB Infektiologie/Spitalhygiene, St Gallen, Switzerland.

Received 20 June, 2007

Revised 7 September, 2007

Accepted 19 September, 2007

Correspondence to Dr Silvia Franceschi, International Agency for Research on Cancer, 150 cours Albert Thomas, 69372 Lyon cedex 08, France. E-mail:

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.