Demographic indicators and risk of infection with human herpesvirus type 8 in central Italy

C. Valdarchi, D. Serraino, P. Cordiali Fei, C. Castilletti, E. Trento, F. Farchi, G. Rezza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: A cross-sectional study was conducted in Latium and Abruzzo Regions (Central Italy) to estimate the prevalence of infection with human herpesvirus type 8 (HHV-8) and the association between demographic indicators and risk of HHV-8 infection. Patients and Methods: Sera from 416 healthy individuals (≥45 years of age), originally recruited in a multicentric case-control study on classic Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), were tested for antibodies against HHV-8. The association between demographic indicators (i.e., urban/rural residence, occupation) and HHV-8 seropositivity was assessed by means of multiple logistic regression (MLR) odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI), adjusted for age and occupation. Results: Overall, 20.4% of the study participants had antibodies against HHV-8, 23.2% of the men and 17.0% of the women (p = 0.15). HHV-8 seropositivity rates significantly increased with age (p = 0.01), from 10.0% in those under 65 years of age to 24.9% in 75 years or older (MLROR = 2.4). By multivariate analysis, a significantly 2-fold higher risk of HHV-8 was found in individuals living in rural areas, as compared to those living in metropolitan/urban areas (MLR-OR = 2.0, 95% CI: 1.1-3.5), and in farmers, as compared to white collars (MLR-OR = 2.1, 95% CI: 1.1-4.1). Conclusions: The study findings suggest that demographic factors such as age, urban/rural residence, and occupation are associated with HHV-8 seropositivity among adult individuals living in central Italy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-25
Number of pages4
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Immunology

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