EBV infections in children usually do not cause symptoms, or the symptoms are not distinguishable from other mild, brief childhood illnesses.
Description Herpesviruses have long been known.
The name actually comes from the Greek adjective herpestes, which means creeping. Many herpesvirus species appear to establish a life-long presence in the human body, remaining dormant for long periods and becoming active for some, often inexplicable, reason.
EBV is only one of several members of the Herpesvirus family that have similar traits. Others include varicella zoster virus—the cause of both chickenpox and shingles—, and the herpes simplex virus responsible for both cold sores and genital herpes.
EBV is usually transmitted through saliva but not blood, and is not normally an airborne infection. EBV occurs in nearly all regions of the world, and is considered among the most common infectious viruses known to humankind. This pattern of infecting adults more than children persists throughout other prosperous western countries, but does not hold true in underdeveloped regions such as Africa and Asia.
In Africa, most children have been infected by EBV by the age of three years Individuals with EBV infections typically show some elevation in the white blood cell count and a noticeable increase in lymphocytes—white blood cells associated with the immune response of the body.
IM is a time-limited infection that usually lasts from one to two months.
EBV infections that lead to Burkitt's lymphoma in Africa typically affect the jaw and mouth area, while the very rare incidences of Burkitt's lymphoma found in developed countries are more apt to manifest tumors in the abdominal region. Nasopharyngeal cancer is uncommon in the West but more prevalent in the Far East.
It affects more men than women, and usually occurs between the ages of 40 and 50 years. It has also become associated consistently with nasopharyngeal cancers in Asia especially China and Burkitt's lymphoma in Africa and Papua New Guinea.
According to the CDC, EBV is not the sole cause of these two malignancies, but does play an important role in the development of both cancers. The mechanism that allows Epstein-Barr Virus to at least help in producing such diverse illnesses in diverse regions of the world has been the subject of increasing research and scrutiny.
It is known that, once it infects a person, EBV is one of the herpesviruses that remain in the human body for life. Under certain, still not-understood conditions, it alters white blood cells normally associated with the immune system, changing B lymphocytes those normally associated with making antibodiesand causing them to reproduce rampantly.
EBV can bind to these white blood cells to produce a solid mass made up of B lymphocytes—called Burkitt's lymphoma—or to the mucous membranes of the mouth and nose and cause nasopharyngeal cancer. Since Burkitt's lymphoma typically occurs in people living in moist, tropical climates, the same regions where people usually contract malaria, it has been speculated that the immune system is altered by its response to malaria.
When EBV infection occurs, the altered immune system's reaction is the production of a tumor. Special Concerns Though studies about the hereditary tendency of abnormal cell development after EBV infection are incomplete, some studies have shown it to be a hereditary trait based upon the X chromosome.
Treatments Because EBV infections are viral in origin, antibiotics are ineffective against them. Much research is geared toward the development of a vaccines effective against both the virus and cancer. Anticancer drugs, such as cyclophosphamide, or radiation therapy have been shown to be effective against Burkitt's lymphoma in four out of five cases.
Alternative and Complementary Therapies The goal of alternative treatment is to lower the white blood cell count to normal levels.
Treatment often includes nutritional supplements such as flaxseed oil or shark cartilage, vitamins—including vitamins C and K, and mineral supplements containing magnesium and potassium.The fourth post in our Cancer and Infections series is a continuation of the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) story.
From its remarkable discovery 50 years ago, we’ve continued to fund research in this area that has led to pioneering new treatments for some EBV-linked cancers. In this post we take a look. Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) provides a good candidate to address these issues.
It persistently infects most humans and is associated with several important diseases. In addition, a detailed biological model has been developed that provides an intricate understanding of EBV infection in the naturally infected human host and accounts for most of.
When we see Epstein-Barr virus in our office, usually our patient comes in thinking they have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, which can be caused by EBV. This is the nature with complex, chronic conditions – they often have similar, bodywide symptoms that can be difficult to naildown.
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a virus that typically causes a mild to moderate illness. Blood tests for Epstein-Barr virus detect antibodies to EBV in the blood and help establish a diagnosis of EBV infection.
Herpes Viruses. You may have heard of the herpes virus, but did you know there are many viruses that fall within the herpes family, all of . Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) & Mononucleosis The Epstein-Barr virus causes mononucleosis in the majority of cases. This ubiquitous, highly contagious organism is a member of the Herpesviridae family of viruses (other viruses in this family include herpes simplex, varicella .