The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), also called Human herpesvirus 4 (HHV-4), is a virus of the herpes family (which includes Herpes simplex virus and Cytomegalovirus), and one of the most common viruses in humans. Most people become infected at one point with EBV, which is often harmless. It is named after M.A. Epstein and Y.M. Barr, who, along with B.G. Achong, discovered the virus in 1964.
symptoms of epstein barr
Epstein Barr symptoms vary depending on disease. Diseases associated with EBV include:
- Stevens Johnson syndrome
- Herpes and Shingles
- Infectious mononucleosis (glandular fever)
- Alice in Wonderland syndrome
- Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, including Burkitt's lymphoma and primary cerebral lymphoma
- Hodgkin's disease
- Post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder
- nasopharyngeal cancer (often found in North Africa, Southern China, and the Arctic, associated with consumption of salted meat.
Role of EBV in disease
It was the first virus to be identified as an oncovirus and associated with the development of cancer.
It is now known to be associated with a variety of tumors that include lymphomas and leukemias, carcinomas and sarcomas. Associated lymphomas include B cell lymphomas, T cell lymphomas, and NK cell lymphomas. The B cell lymphomas are Burkitt's lymphoma, particularly the form that is endemic in equatorial Africa and appears to be associated with malaria. Other B cell lymphomas arise in immunocompromised patients such as those with AIDS or who have undergone organ transplantation with associated immunosuppression. Hodgkin's disease (also referred to as Hodgkin's lymphoma) is also often associated with EBV. Recently it is appreciated to be a B lineage lymphoma. Peripheral T cell lymphomas are sometimes associated with the virus and NK cell lymphomas, particularly the nasal form are consistently associated. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma is virtually always EBV associated, while gastric carcinoma is associated approximately 10% of the time. Smooth muscle tumors are also associated with the virus in immunocompromised patients.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, EBV became the favoured explanation for chronic fatigue syndrome. It was noted that people complaining of characteristic exhaustion had EBV, although it was also noted EBV was present in almost everyone, even those not complaining of exhaustion. The debate lasted for several years. Recently the virus has been implicated in invasive breast cancer.
In Africa, it is associated with Burkitt's lymphoma, a type of Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. It is suspected by some that malaria may be a cofactor.
Posted by Staff at May 18, 2005 1:53 AMblog comments powered by Disqus
my girl's boy is being checked for lymphoproliferative disorder brought on by ebstien barr virus. symptoms are loss of motor skills, vomiting, spinning dizzy, can't urinate. we are 6 weeks in the hospital now. any suggestions would be kind.
Posted by: mike knight at September 6, 2006 4:25 AM
i have been tested positive for EBNA, EBV-VCA IGG, this is new to me, never read on it. what is it?
Posted by: amy at November 6, 2006 11:06 PM
I am 22 years old and 2 years ago i had a know come up in my neck and my docs treated me for infection, well come to find out over a year later, i had nasopharyngeal carcinoma, caused by Epstein Barr...i had 5 months of harsh treatment but thanks to prayers and the grace of God i am in remission.....but if you suspect anything may have to do with Epstein Barr, go to the doctor!!
Posted by: amber at December 12, 2006 8:50 PM
I am 22 years old and 2 years ago i had a knot come up in my neck and my docs treated me for infection, well come to find out over a year later, i had nasopharyngeal carcinoma,STAGE 4, caused by Epstein Barr...i had 5 months of harsh treatment but thanks to prayers and the grace of God i am in remission.....but if you suspect anything may have to do with Epstein Barr, go to the doctor!!
Posted by: amber at December 12, 2006 8:51 PM
I was diagnosed sept 2003 thanks be to God i was treated and have been cancer free for 2 years and
seven months. i want to know about the lost of taste buds, do they come back all the way or only
a portion. if they do come back how long does it take.
Posted by: debra wilkins at December 17, 2006 2:31 AM