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Correlates of Human Herpesvirus-8 Seropositivity Among U.S. Military Members Recently Infected With Human Immunodeficiency Virus

Crum, Nancy F. MD, MPH*; Wallace, Mark R. MD*; Stephan, Kevin MD; Blazes, David L. MD, MPH; Aronson, Naomi MD§; Tasker, Sybil A. MD; Thomas, Anne G. PhD; Wegner, Scott MD; Casper, Corey MD, MPH**; Wald, Anna MD, MPH; Corey, Lawrence MD; Brodine, Stephanie K. MD

doi: 10.1097/01.OLQ.0000078627.30743.4A
Article

Background Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8), the cause of Kaposi's sarcoma, is common among HIV-infected persons. The exact route of transmission of HHV-8 in various populations is still debated.

Goal The goal was to define the correlates of HHV-8 infection among men recently infected with human immunodeficiency virus.

Study Design Three hundred forty-two HIV-infected U.S. military men were evaluated using a questionnaire regarding potential risk factors and laboratory data, including HHV-8, herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2), syphilis, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C serologies.

Results The seroprevalence of HHV-8 was 32%. HHV-8 was significantly associated with hepatitis B seropositivity (odds ratio [OR], 2.44; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.5–4.1), and black ethnicity was negatively associated with HHV-8 (OR, 0.6; 95% CI, 0.3–0.9) in the multivariate analysis. HHV-8 was not associated with drug use or hepatitis C seropositivity. Among men who have sex with men (MSM), HHV-8 infection correlated with hepatitis B seropositivity (OR, 2.2; 95% CI, 1.1–4.3) and HSV-2 (OR, 2.6; 95% CI, 1.4–4.9). Among heterosexuals, the correlates of HHV-8 were different; blacks as compared with whites (OR, 0.3; 95% CI, 0.1–0.8) and married versus single status (OR, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.2–0.9) were associated with a lower rate of HHV-8 infection. Among heterosexuals, hepatitis B, HSV-2, and sexual behaviors were not associated with HHV-8.

Conclusion This study suggests that the seroprevalence of HHV-8 is increased in both MSM and heterosexual men with HIV infection, and that the route(s) of HHV-8 acquisition might be different between MSM and heterosexuals.

A study among U.S. military men recently infected with HIV found that HHV-8 seropositivity was 32%, and that risk factors for HHV-8 differed between homosexuals and heterosexuals.

From the *Department of Medicine, Infectious Diseases Division, Naval Medical Center San Diego, San Diego, California; Infectious Diseases Division, Wilford Hall Medical Center, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas; Infectious Diseases Service, National Naval Medical Center and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland; §Infectious Diseases Division, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC, and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland; Naval Health Research Center, San Diego, California; U.S. Military HIV Research Program, Rockville, Maryland, and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland; the **Department of Medicine, Infectious Diseases Division, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington; the Departments of Medicine, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington; and the Departments of Medicine, Laboratory Medicine, and Program in Infectious Disease, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington, Seattle, Washington

The authors thank Joyce Gilcrest and Brandie Pope for their assistance with the U.S. military HIV database, and Heather Taylor and Anne Cent for their assistance with the HHV-8 serologic assays.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of the Army, Department of the Air Force, Department of Defense, or the United States Government.

Financial support provided by the U.S. Military HIV Research Program, Rockville, Maryland, NIH Grants P01 AI-30731 and U19 AI-31448, and the Joel Meyer Infectious Disease Scholarship Grant.

A subset of data in this article was presented at the 40th Annual Meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, October 24-27, 2002, Abstract #511.

Correspondence: Nancy F. Crum, c/o Clinical Investigation Department (KCA), Naval Medical Center San Diego, 34800 Bob Wilson Drive, Suite 5, San Diego, CA 92134-1005. E-mail: nfcrum@nmcsd.med.navy.mil

Received January 23, 2003,

revised April 25, 2003, and accepted May 7, 2003.

© Copyright 2003 American Sexually Transmitted Diseases Association