Early events in the pathogenesis of KSHV-associated lymphoproliferations in the context of HIV disease remain poorly understood. Recent research indicates that latent HIV infection causes persistent immune dysfunction in B cell follicles. Simultaneously, lack of T cell immune surveillance in the lymph nodes dysregulates the biology of EBV. In sum, these defects bias B lymphocyte maturation away from traditional T cell-dependent germinal center-mediated pathways and towards extrafollicular pathways. Recent advances in B lymphocyte immunology suggest that extrafollicular maturation pathways for antibody secreting cells are more flexible and robust than previously believed. These responses are now understood to be both durable and antigen-specific, and even canonically germinal center-restricted events such as class switch recombination and somatic hypermutation have now been demonstrated in an extrafollicular context. As a lymphotrophic pathogen which causes disease primarily in the context of HIV and EBV co-infection, future studies examining the interactions of KSHV biology with extrafollicular B cell maturation pathways will be critical to uncovering key aspects of KSHV-mediated immune pathology.
Totonchy J, Extrafollicular Activities: Perspectives on HIV infection, germinal center-independent maturation pathways, and KSHV-mediated lymphoproliferation, Current Opinion in Virology, doi:10.1016/j.coviro.2017.07.016
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