Epstein-Barr virus may cause and prevent lymphomas


A study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation may shed new light on the understanding of the link between the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and lymphoma.

While it has been known for years that the virus is capable of causing some subtypes of lymphoma, researchers from Imperial College London believe they have uncovered evidence that EBV may also carry not just an oncogene but also its contrary-- a tumor suppressor gene.

The viral gene is known as EBNA3B and researchers are speculating that it may be an evolutionary adaptation that works to keep EBV in check within the cells.

When the dormant virus within the cell does kick-start lymphomas such as Hodgkin's or Burkitt's lymphoma, researchers speculate that some of the time this may be on account of a mutation in EBNA3B.

Source: Sciencenews.org

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