Purpose: To investigate the occurrence of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients receiving long-term antiretroviral therapy and factors associated with the development of these lymphomas. Patients and Methods: The charts of 55 patients with advanced HIV infection receiving zidovudine (formerly known as azidothymidine [AZT])-based therapy and 61 patients receiving dideoxyinosine (ddl) were examined for the occurrence of NHL. Stored samples from the AZT-based treatment cohort were examined retrospectively for parameters predictive of the subsequent development of lymphoma. Results: Eight of 55 patients receiving AZT-based therapy developed NHL, yielding an estimated probability of 12% (95% confidence interval [CI], 4.7% to 27.1 %) after 24 months, and 29.2% (95% CI, 15.2% to 48.7%) after 36 months. Four of 61 patients receiving ddl developed NHL, yielding a 6.2% (95% CI, 2.1% to 17%) estimated probability after 24 months, and 9.5% (95% Cl, 3.6% to 22.8%) after 36 months. The difference between these cohorts was not significant (two-tailed P [P2] = .13). Patients with less than 50 CD4 cells/μL developed NHL at a significantly higher rate (P2 = .0085). This was particularly true for patients who presented with primary CNS lymphoma (PCNSL). For patients receiving AZT-based therapy, pretreatment serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels were somewhat higher in those who subsequently developed NHL than in those who did not (P2 = .048). Conclusion: HIV-infected patients with profound immunodeficiency, especially those with less than 50 CD4 cells/μL, are at substantial risk of developing NHL and particularly PCNSL. Additional studies are needed to define the role of other factors such as IL-6 in the pathogenesis of these opportunistic tumors.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research