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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 95-102

Epstein–Barr Virus DNAemia and co-occurrence with cytomegalovirus DNAemia in postrenal transplant recipients from a tertiary care center


1 Department of Microbiology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Nephrology, Saveetha Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
3 Deparment of Virology, King Institute of Preventive Medicine and Research, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Padma Srikanth
Department of Microbiology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, Chennai - 600 116, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijot.ijot_1_18

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Aim: Co-occurrence of Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) with Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is associated with an increased risk of EBV-associated posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD). Quantitation of EBV by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) can aid the clinicians in the initiation of preemptive measures to improve the survival of the graft. Methods: The study was conducted among postrenal transplant recipients (PRTRs) who were attending the nephrology department from 2011 to 2016. Real-time quantitative PCR for EBV was performed in whole blood. PRTRs were classified into asymptomatic with altered renal parameters (Group A) and symptomatic (Group B), which were further subcategorized into Group B1 (fever with anemia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, or altered liver enzymes (any two), Group B2 (Group B1 + end-organ disease or only end-organ disease), and Group B3 (graft dysfunction [GDF]). The posttransplant period was also defined. DNA was extracted (Qiagen, Hilden, Germany) from whole blood, and real-time PCR was performed using QuantiTect multiplex PCR kit. Unpaired t-tests and ANOVA were used to analyze the data. Results: A total of 89 PRTRs were enrolled, of which 39.3% (n = 35) had EBV DNAemia, 43.1% during very late, 41.1% in late and 28.6% in immediate post transplant periods. EBV DNAemia ranged from 324 to 32,436 copies/ml. EBV DNAemia was found in 84% (n = 75) of symptomatic (Group B) and 16% (n = 14) of asymptomatic (Group A). Among the PRTRs with GDF (Group B3), 44% (n = 11/25) had EBV DNAemia of 2893.9 ± 1869 copies/ml. EBV DNAemia was considerably higher in PRTRs without GDF (8700.2 ± 9675.6 copies/ml) than PRTRs with GDF and the difference was statistically significant (P = 0.004). EBV DNAemia with CMV DNAemia among PRTRs was found in 21.3% (n = 19). Conclusion: High EBV DNAemia may precede PTLD or GDF; therefore, regular screening of EBV DNAemia is warranted. CMV and EBV DNAemia may also co-exist in PRTRs. As CMV is an immunomodulating virus, it increases the risk of opportunistic infections, especially EBV.


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