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1.  Epstein-Barr virus-positive diffuse large B-cell lymphoma of the elderly expresses EBNA3A with conserved CD8+ T-cell epitopes 
Post-transplantation lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLD) arise in the immunosuppressed and are frequently Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) associated. The most common PTLD histological sub-type is diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (EBV+DLBCL-PTLD). Restoration of EBV-specific T-cell immunity can induce EBV+DLBCL-PTLD regression. The most frequent B-cell lymphoma in the immunocompetent is also DLBCL. ‘EBV-positive DLBCL of the elderly’ (EBV+DLBCL) is a rare but well-recognized DLBCL entity that occurs in the overtly immunocompetent, that has an adverse outcome relative to EBV-negative DLBCL. Unlike PTLD (which is classified as viral latency III), literature suggests EBV+DLBCL is typically latency II, i.e. expression is limited to the immuno-subdominant EBNA1, LMP1 and LMP2 EBV-proteins. If correct, this would be a major impediment for T-cell immunotherapeutic strategies. Unexpectedly we observed EBV+DLBCL-PTLD and EBV+DLBCL both shared features consistent with type III EBV-latency, including expression of the immuno-dominant EBNA3A protein. Extensive analysis showed frequent polymorphisms in EB-NA1 and LMP1 functionally defined CD8+ T-cell epitope encoding regions, whereas EBNA3A polymorphisms were very rare making this an attractive immunotherapy target. As with EBV+DLBCL-PTLD, the antigen presenting machinery within lymphomatous nodes was intact. EBV+DLBCL express EBNA3A suggesting it is amenable to immunotherapeutic strategies.
PMCID: PMC3301425  PMID: 22432076
Epstein-Barr virus; diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; EBNA3A; T-cell; epitope; immunotherapy; posttransplantation lymphoproliferative disorder
2.  Novel Approach to the Formulation of an Epstein-Barr Virus Antigen-Based Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma Vaccine ▿  
Journal of Virology  2009;84(1):407-417.
Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is associated with several malignant diseases including nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), a common neoplasm throughout southeast Asia. Radiotherapy and chemotherapy can achieve remission, but a reemergence of disease is not uncommon. Therefore, there is a need for specific therapies that target the tumor through the recognition of EBV antigens. In NPC, latent membrane protein 1 (LMP1) and LMP2 offer the best opportunity for specific targeting since they are typically expressed and T-cell determinants in each of these proteins have been defined. We have attempted to maximize the opportunity of incorporating every possible CD4 and CD8 determinant in a single formulation. We have achieved this by generating a scrambled protein incorporating random overlapping peptide sets from EBNA1, LMP1, and LMP2, which was then inserted into a replication-deficient strain of adenovirus (adenovirus scrambled antigen vaccine [Ad-SAVINE]). This report describes the construction of this Ad-SAVINE construct, its utility in generating LMP1 and LMP2 responses in healthy individuals as well as NPC patients, and its capacity to define new epitopes. This formulation could have a role in NPC immunotherapy for all ethnic groups since it has the potential to activate all possible CD4 and CD8 responses within EBNA1 and LMPs.
PMCID: PMC2798422  PMID: 19846527

Results 1-2 (2)