Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) is
an infection that affects the liver. HCV may or may not cause
symptoms. About 3.2 million people are affected in the US.
WebMD: Hepatitis C Facts,
Symptoms, Causes, Treatments
The association between HCV and
lymphoma suggests that this virus in some cases might be
a driver of lymphoma. The virus, for example in some
cases, might stimulate chronic cell division in lymphoma
(immune) cells. Rituxan, a common part of treatment for
b-cell lymphoma can also lead to reactivation of a latent
("sleeping") virus infection.
2015- full text:
Hepatitis C virus reactivation in cancer patients in the
era of targeted therapies
According to NCCN guidelines
testing for HCV is essential for marginal zone lymphoma and
indicated for other lymphomas in select cases. Evidence and
clinical observation supports an association of HCV and B-cell
NHL; and that direct-acting antiviral agents (DAA) for
chronic carriers of HCV with genotype 1 demonstrated a high rate
of sustained viral responses.
For Low-grade B-cell NHL, combined therapy with DAA
should be considered in asymptomatic patients with HCV genotype
1 since this therapy can result in regression of lymphoma.
For aggressive B-cell NHL, liver functional tests and serum HCV
RNA levels should be closely monitored during and after
chemoimmunotherapy for development of hepatotoxicity. Antiviral
therapy should be considered in patients in complete remission
after completion of lymphoma therapy.
We suggest that you patients
discuss with their doctor if testing for HCV is indicated.
Anti-viral therapy could be prudent for patients who test
positive for this infection according to recent reports as
2011 - full text:
Hepatitis C virus-related B cell subtypes in non Hodgkin's lymphoma
Of 125 consecutive patients
presenting with B-NHL, 24 patients were HCV antibody positive, and
all were viremic. The prevalence of HCV-related B-NHL in our
population was 19.2%. Of these patients, 13 (54%) had DLBCL, while
11 (46%) had an indolent, HCV-related B-NHL (Table (Table11).
Hepatitis C virus and lymphoma. - PubMed - NCBI
2015 - abstract:
Antiviral therapy: better survival in patients with
hepatitis C virus and B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas,
Virus-driven autoimmunity and lymphoproliferation: the
example of HCV infection. - PubMed - NCBI
Viral Hepatitis Statistics & Surveillance - Surveillance for
Viral Hepatitis – United States, 2012