Serological follow-up study on the antibody levels to Epstein-Barr virus-determined nuclear antigen (EBNA) patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) after radiation therapy

Biken J. 1987 Jun;30(2):45-51.


Serological follow-up studies for up to 4 years on the levels of IgG antibody to EBV-determined nuclear antigen (EBNA) were carried out on 36 patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). The serum levels of IgA antibody specific to EBV capsid antigen (VCA) were also measured in some of the patients. The titers of EBNA antibody were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and those of IgA antibody to VCA were measured by the indirect immunofluorescence method. The EBNA antibody titers in most sera from the patients before radiation therapy were found to be at least 4 times the mean values in the sera of healthy control adults. Within 2 to 8 months after completion of therapy by 4-MV liniac X-ray irradiation with total doses of 60 to 80 Gy, the titers of EBNA antibody in the sera of 6 patients had returned to normal levels, and low levels of EBNA antibody were maintained for a long time after therapy. These serological data were associated with a good clinical prognosis without recurrence or metastases. But in 6 patients, the patterns of change in the EBNA antibody levels were different: the levels remained high after therapy or first decreased to the normal level and then rose to at least 4 times this level. These 6 patients showed recurrence or metastases. The patterns of change in the EBNA antibody levels were well correlated with those of change in the levels of IgA antibody specific to VCA.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antigens, Viral / immunology*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / blood
  • Capsid Proteins*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Nuclear Antigens
  • Female
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin A / metabolism
  • Immunoglobulin G / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nasopharyngeal Neoplasms / blood
  • Nasopharyngeal Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Nasopharyngeal Neoplasms / radiotherapy


  • Antigens, Viral
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Capsid Proteins
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Nuclear Antigens
  • Epstein-Barr viral capsid antigen
  • Immunoglobulin A
  • Immunoglobulin G