Abstract

Although the incidence of HIV-associated Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) has decreased since the use of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) and survival has improved, NHL still represents one of the most frequent and severe complications in HIV-infected patients. Out of the 361 patients included in a cohort of HIV-NHL from 1996 to 2006, 114 patients had undetectable (? 500 copies/ml) plasma HIV-RNA. These patients were included in a study to analyze the characteristics of NHL over time according to the duration of HIV infection control. All available histological samples were reviewed by a single pathologist. Tumor was defined as virus-associated (VposNHL) if EBV (ISH, IHC or PCR) or HHV-8 (IHC or PCR) were detected in the tumor cells, and not virus-associated (VnegNHL) if nor EBV nor HHV8 were detected. Comparisons were performed using non parametric tests. All patients were treated with cART, with a median duration of 24 months (IQR, 2–119). The median duration of HIV replication control was 9.3 months (IQR, 0.13–90.5). Most cases (63%) had occurred within 18 months of HIV control versus only 37% after M18. When comparing characteristics of NHL in patients with less or more than 18 months of HIV control, the patients were older (52 years versus 41 years, P<10–4), have a longer median duration of HIV infection (4 years versus 2.4 years, P=.006), and a higher median CD4 cell count (346 × 106/L versus 275 × 106/L, P=.03) when HIV control was >18 months versus ?18 months. None of the NHL features (histology, phenotype, staging, ECOG, LDH, B symptoms) were different between the 2 groups. Virus-association could be assessed for EBV and HHV-8 in 96 cases (84%): 52 patients presented with a virus-associated tumor (31 EBV+, 13 HHV-8+, 8 both) and 43 tumors were not virus-associated. There was no difference in this repartition according to the duration of HIV control (P=.62).

VposNHLVnegNHLVundeterNHL
HIV-RNA <500 cop/ml < 18 months 30 28 14 
HIV-RNA <500 cop/ml > 18 months 16 13 
Median CD4 cell count (×106/L) 280 290 317 
VposNHLVnegNHLVundeterNHL
HIV-RNA <500 cop/ml < 18 months 30 28 14 
HIV-RNA <500 cop/ml > 18 months 16 13 
Median CD4 cell count (×106/L) 280 290 317 

Virus-associated tumors were neither associated with CD4 cell count (P=.86), nor with CD8 cell count (P=.78). In conclusion, NHL still occur in patients with HIV controled infection (30% of HIV-NHL), but within the first 18 months after plasma HIV-RNA becomes undetectable in most patients. After 18 months, the incidence dramaticaly decreased. However, characteristics of NHL and specifically the association with EBV and/or HHV-8 were not different according to the duration of control of HIV infection.

Author notes

Disclosure:Research Funding: ANRS grants.