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An integrated approach to the epidemiology of Kaposi's sarcoma

Jacobson, Lisa P., ScD; Armenian, Haroutune K., MD, DrPH

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As an AIDS-defining illness, Kaposi's sarcoma primarily occurs among HIV-infected homosexual men in developed countries and among men and women in Africa. Except in Africa, Kaposi's sarcoma was rarely diagnosed prior to the AIDS epidemic. The clustering of cases geographically and by gender suggest an environmental influence. Epidemiologic evidence of an infectious cofactor for the disease is presented with the recent findings of herpetic-like viral DNA in Kaposi's sarcoma tissue. Observations indicate that this putative cofactor is sexually transmitted. A model is provided that integrates the virologic and epidemiologic components in the etiology of Kaposi's sarcoma.

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Copyright © 1995 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.