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Advances in Hematology
Volume 2011, Article ID 835314, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/835314
Review Article

HCV Infection and B-Cell Lymphomagenesis

1Department of Research on Blood and Biological Products, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, 4-7-1 Gakuen, MusashiMurayama-shi, Tokyo 208-0011, Japan
2Department of Infectious Diseases, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, 1-20-1 Handayama, Higashi-ku, Hamamatsu 431-3192, Japan
3Department of Bacterial Pathogenesis and Infection, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, 4-7-1 Gakuen, MusashiMurayama-shi, Tokyo 208-0011, Japan

Received 7 March 2011; Revised 14 June 2011; Accepted 17 June 2011

Academic Editor: Daniele Vallisa

Copyright © 2011 Masahiko Ito et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) has been recognized as a major cause of chronic liver diseases worldwide. It has been suggested that HCV infects not only hepatocytes but also mononuclear lymphocytes including B cells that express the CD81 molecule, a putative HCV receptor. HCV infection of B cells is the likely cause of B-cell dysregulation disorders such as mixed cryoglobulinemia, rheumatoid factor production, and B-cell lymphoproliferative disorders that may evolve into non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). Epidemiological data indicate an association between HCV chronic infection and the occurrence of B-cell NHL, suggesting that chronic HCV infection is associated at least in part with B-cell lymphomagenesis. In this paper, we aim to provide an overview of recent literature, including our own, to elucidate a possible role of HCV chronic infection in B-cell lymphomagenesis.