HIV and human herpesvirus 8 co-infection across the globe: Systematic review and meta-analysis


HIV-infection is an important risk factor for developing Kaposi sarcoma (KS), but it is unclear whether HIV-positive persons are also at increased risk of co-infection with human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8), the infectious cause of KS. We systematically searched literature up to December 2012 and included studies reporting HHV-8 seroprevalence for HIV-positive and HIV-negative persons. We used random-effects meta-analysis to combine odds ratios (ORs) of the association between HIV and HHV-8 seropositivity and conducted random-effects meta-regression to identify sources of heterogeneity. We included 93 studies with 58,357 participants from 32 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, North and South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Overall, HIV-positive persons were more likely to be HHV-8 seropositive than HIV-negative persons (OR 1.99, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.70-2.34) with considerable heterogeneity among studies (I2 84%). The association was strongest in men who have sex with men (MSM, OR 3.95, 95% CI 2.92-5.35), patients with hemophilia (OR 3.11, 95% CI 1.19-8.11), and children (OR 2.45, 95% CI 1.58-3.81), but weaker in heterosexuals who engage in low-risk (OR 1.42, 95% CI 1.16-1.74) or high-risk sexual behavior (OR 1.66, 95% CI 1.27-2.17), persons who inject drugs (OR 1.66, 95% CI 1.28-2.14), and pregnant women (OR 1.68, 95% CI 1.15-2.47), p value for interaction <0.001. In conclusion, HIV-infection was associated with an increased HHV-8 seroprevalence in all population groups examined. A better understanding of HHV-8 transmission in different age and behavioral groups is needed to develop strategies to prevent HHV-8 transmission.


Rohner E, Wyss N, Heg Z, Faralli Z, Mbulaiteye SM, Novak U, Zwahlen M, Egger M, Bohlius J.




  • Population(s)
    • Men who have sex with men
    • Women
    • Children or Youth (less than 18 years old)
    • People who use drugs
    • General HIV+ population
  • Co-infections
    • Other
  • Co-morbidities
    • Other


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