Epstein–Barr virus (EBV), which encodes >80 genes and nearly 50 non-coding RNAs, is a double-stranded DNA virus. EBV is associated with various types of lymphomas and lymphoproliferative disorders not only of B-cell but also T/NK-cell origin. However, the oncogenic mechanism remains poorly understood, including the EBV receptors expressed on T/NK cells, relationship of EBV with host genes, and epigenetic regulation of EBV and host genes. The roles of host and viral non-coding RNAs during tumorigenesis have been elucidated. EBV encodes at least 49 mature microRNAs (miRNAs), of which 44 are located in BamHI-A rightward transcripts (BARTs) region, and the remaining five are located in BamHI-H rightward fragment 1. BART miRNAs modulate cell differentiation, proliferation, apoptosis, and the cell cycle, and they are considered positive regulators of oncogenesis. We and others have recently reported that EBV-positive lymphomas frequently possess large deletions in BART miRNA clusters, suggesting that some viral miRNAs have suppressive effects on oncogenesis, and that deletion of these miRNAs may aid lymphoma formation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Microbiology (medical)