Epstein-Barr virus infection and expression in oral lesions.Oral Dis. 1997 May; 3 Suppl 1:S164-70.OD
The prevalence of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and the recently discovered Kaposi's sarcoma associated herpes virus, human herpesvirus 8 (KSHV or HHV8), was determined within oral lesions common to HIV infection including OHL, pseudoOHL (PHL), oral lymphoma, oral aphthous ulcers, and an oral Kaposi's sarcoma.
DNA and RNA were extracted from oral lesions. EBV and HHV8 genomes were detected by Southern blot and polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and viral expression was analyzed using PCR amplification of cDNA.
Multiple EBV strains were detected within OHL with recombination across repeat sequences generating new viral variants. EBV expression in OHL included expression of some viral genes, usually expressed in latent infections, that induce the EBV receptor. EBV replication was detected only within OHL lesions but not within adjacent Kaposi's tissue or oral aphthous ulcers while HHV8 was only detected within the Kaposi's lesions.
These findings indicate that the OHL lesion is unique with viral replication and superinfection with additional EBV strains. Expression of the EBV receptor within the OHL lesion may promote superinfection which then activates EBV replication. The consistent detection of EBV replication only within OHL lesions and the detection of HHV8 only within Kaposi's sarcoma, strengthens the etiologic link between EBV and HHV8 infection to these specific pathologies.