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September 1975

Epstein-Barr Virus Associated With Episodes of Recurrent Tonsillitis

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Otolaryngology (Drs. Veltri and Sprinkle), and the Department of Microbiology (Dr. Veltri and Mr. McClung), West Virginia University Medical Center, Morgantown.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1975;101(9):552-556. doi:10.1001/archotol.1975.00780380030007

• A group of patients with a history of recurrent tonsillitis were observed during an acute episode to determine the cause of the infection.

The microbial pathogen that was consistently implicated was the Epstein-Barr virus. Seventeen (65%) of 26 patients exhibited a substantial seroconversion to the early antigen of Epstein-Barr-virus-infected lymphoblastoid cells (P3HR-1).

We conclude that there is a high incidence of tonsillitis associated with the Epstein-Barr virus. The propensity of the virus for the palatine tonsils, a rich source of B cells, is suggested. Furthermore, the value of monitoring early antigen titers to confirm the nature of the infection is apparent, bearing relevance to future studies of this virus.

(Arch Otolaryngol 101:552-556, 1975)

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