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Epstein-Barr virus infection in the pathogenesis of nasopharyngeal carcinoma
  1. G Niedobitek1
  1. 1Institute for Pathology, Friedrich-Alexander-University, Krankenhausstr. 8–10, 91054 Erlangen, Germany
  1. Dr Niedobitek gerald.niedobitek{at}


The association of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) with the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) was firmly established as early as 1973. Nevertheless, the role for the virus in the pathogenesis of NPC is still controversial. In this article, the evidence implicating EBV in the development of NPC is reviewed, focusing on the cellular site of EBV persistence, the association of the virus with different NPC histotypes, the tumour cell phenotype in the context of viral latent gene expression, and the possible role of the lymphoid stroma.

  • Epstein-Barr virus
  • nasopharyngeal carcinoma
  • viral latent gene expression

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