Body cavity-based malignant lymphoma containing Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus in an HIV-negative man with previous Kaposi sarcoma

Ann Intern Med. 1996 Nov 15;125(10):822-5. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-125-10-199611150-00006.


Background: The role of Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus in the development of malignant lymphomas in patients negative for the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has not been established.

Objective: To examine the possible role of Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus in a case of body cavity-based malignant lymphoma that occurred in an HIV-negative patient who had previously had Kaposi sarcoma.

Design: Case study.

Setting: Academic medical center.

Patient: A 94-year-old man with lymphomatous ascites.

Measurements: Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot DNA analysis.

Results: The body cavity-based lymphoma cells were positive for Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus by PCR and were negative for other herpesviruses, including Epstein-Barr virus, cytomegalovirus, and human herpesviruses 6 and 7. Southern blot analysis of lymphoma DNA showed high levels of Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (> 40 to 80 genomes/cell). Clonal rearrangement of the immunoglobulin JH and JK genes was present, confirming the presence of a clonal B-cell proliferation.

Conclusions: Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus may be involved in the development of malignant lymphoma after Kaposi sarcoma in HIV-negative patients. This type of lymphoma, in contrast to body cavity-based lymphoma related to the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, may have an indolent clinical course.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blotting, Southern
  • DNA, Viral / analysis
  • Gene Rearrangement, B-Lymphocyte
  • HIV Seronegativity*
  • Herpesviridae / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma / genetics
  • Lymphoma / virology*
  • Male
  • Neoplasms, Second Primary / genetics
  • Neoplasms, Second Primary / virology*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / virology*


  • DNA, Viral