The Role of Microbial Translocation and Immune Activation in AIDS-Associated Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Pathogenesis: What Have We Learned?


Epeldegui M and Hussain SK. Crit Rev Immunol 2020.


Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is associated with greatly increased risk for development of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Nearly all acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)-associated NHL (AIDS-NHL) is of B-cell origin. Two major mechanisms are believed to contribute to the genesis of AIDS-NHL: (1) loss of immunoregulation of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)+ B cells, resulting from impaired T-cell function late in the course of HIV disease and (2) chronic B-cell activation, leading to

DNA-modifying events that contribute to oncogene mutations/ translocations. HIV infection has long been known to be associated with chronic inflammation and polyclonal B-cell activation, and more recently, microbial translocation. Microbial translocation is bacterial product leakage from gut lumen into the peripheral circulation, resulting in high levels of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in the peripheral circulation, leading to chronic immune activation and inflammation. We review recent literature linking microbial translocation to lymphom-agenesis. This includes epidemiological studies of biomarkers of microbial translocation with risk of AIDS-NHL and emerging data on the mechanisms by which microbial translocation may lead to AIDS-NHL development.