Because there are few studies regarding the clinical impact of circulating EBVDNA in peripheral T-cell lymphomas (PTCLs), we tried to evaluate the role of EBVDNA in whole blood as a prognostic factor for PTCL. We retrospectively reviewed 110 PTCL patients with median age of 63 (20-94) years. Forty-seven patients (42.7%) showed positive results for EBV-DNA, and these patients also had stage III/IV disease, elevated lactic dehydrogenase, and low albumin level (P = 0.007, P = 0.004, P = 0.002, respectively). The 5-year overall survival (OS) and progression free survival (PFS) were 21.0% and 18.0%. Univariable analysis showed that positive EBVDNA was related with inferior OS and PFS (P = 0.015 and P < 0.001, respectively). Multivariable analysis showed that poor performance status, extranodal involvement more than one site and positive EBV-DNA results were related with OS and PFS (P < 0.001, P < 0.001, P = 0.007 and P = 0.001, P = 0.002, P < 0.001, respectively). Using these three variables, we made a new prognostic model which classified patients on risk as follows: low, no adverse factors; intermediate, 1 factor; or high, 2-3 factors. The new prognostic model could stratify the three groups for OS and PFS better than either international prognostic index or prognostic index of PTCL-u, and showed statistical significance in PTCL, not otherwise specified. This study suggests that whole blood EBV-DNA is related with aggressive clinical characteristics and inferior survival. The new prognostic model, which incorporates EBV-DNA, could better stratify PTCL patients.
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