Background. This study investigates the association between human herpesvirus eight (HHV8) and Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), the most common cancer occurring in renal transplant recipients in Saudi Arabia.
Methods. A cross-sectional study of seroreactivity to HHV8 antigens in posttransplant KS patients from a tertiary care hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and in control subjects without KS was conducted. Seroreactivity rates were determined using immunoblotting assays to detect antibodies to two lytic cycle HHV8 antigens: p40, an antigen found in infected cells, and sVCA, an HHV8-encoded small viral capsid antigen expressed in Escherichia coli.
Results. Antibodies to HHV8 p40 and sVCA were present in a significantly higher proportion of renal transplant patients with KS (13 of 14 patients) compared to renal transplant patients without KS (5 of 18;P<0.001) and compared to other control individuals (6 of 44; P<0.001). HHV8 seroreactivity was more common among patients with renal failure (28%) than among other control groups(7%).
Conclusions. The serologic results provide evidence of a strong association between HHV8 and posttransplant KS in Saudi Arabia.
Department of Medicine, Nephrology Section, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Departments of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut; and Department of Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven, Connecticut 06516
1This work was supported by NIH grants CA 70036 and AI 22959.
2 Department of Medicine, Nephrology Section, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center.
3 Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, Yale University School of Medicine.
4 Current affiliation: Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology, Case Western Reserve University, School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH 44106.
5 Department of Pediatrics, Yale University School of Medicine.
6 Current affiliation: Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Division of Anti-infective Drug Products, HFD-520, Rockville, MD 30857.
7 Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine.
8 Department of Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System.
9 Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University School of Medicine.
10 Address correspondence to: Dr. G. Miller, Department of Pediatrics, Yale University School of Medicine, Room 420 LSOG, 333 Cedar Street, New Haven, CT 06520. E-mail: George_Miller@qm.yale.edu.
Received 2 July 1997.
Accepted 20 October 1997.