We studied neopterin excretion levels and immunological features of 20 patients affected by Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), compared to 30 normal controls. Eighteen patients had the classic form of Kaposi's sarcoma (CKS), while two patients were anti-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) seropositive and affected by the epidemic form associated with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). In CKS patients, a trend of an increase of neopterin levels with more advanced stages appeared from our data whereas a significant reduction in CD3+ and CD4+ lymphocytes subsets was observed already at early stages (P <0.01). CD8+ cells did not show significant variations. A significant increase in serum IgA immunoglobulins (P <0.05) was also observed. Comparative analysis of the two patients affected by AIDS/KS showed the profound deficit in T-cell immunity but also the prognostic value of neopterin monitoring. Furthermore these findings seem to confirm Kaposi's sarcoma as an 'opportunistic neoplasia' and indicate neopterin as a useful prognostic marker.
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