Encyclopedia of AIDS

2018 Edition
| Editors: Thomas J. Hope, Douglas D. Richman, Mario Stevenson

Kaposi Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus (KSHV) or Human Herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8)

  • Blossom DamaniaEmail author
  • Dirk P. Dittmer
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-7101-5_17


Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) or human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) is a virus that is associated with the original AIDS-defining tumor, Kaposi sarcoma (KS). This virus is necessary for the development of KS. Expression of the viral protein, LANA, represents the definitive diagnostic marker for KS. In addition to KS, KSHV is also associated with primary effusion lymphoma and a plasmablastic variant of multicentric Castleman disease.

KSHV is a double-stranded DNA virus. There exists no vaccine against this virus. Viral DNA replication is sensitive to ganciclovir. The virus establishes lifelong latency in the infected host.


The development of Kaposi sarcoma (KS) is linked to infection with Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV, also known as human herpesvirus 8). This association was established when Drs. Yuan Chang and Patrick Moore discovered viral DNA in KS biopsies, but not in the skin from healthy controls. KSHV is present in essentially every...

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© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Program in Global Oncology, Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Center for AIDS ResearchUniversity of North CarolinaChapel HillUSA