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This article is part of the supplement: 15th International Conference on Human Retroviruses: HTLV and Related Viruses

Open Access Open Badges Meeting abstract

Association between Human T-Cell Lymphotropic Virus Type 1 and 2 (HTLV 1/2) infection and tuberculosis: systematic review and meta-analysis

Sérgio Arruda12*, Camila Loureiro1, Marcos Almeida1, Dayana Mendes2, Maria F R Grassi12, José R Lapa3, Afrânio Kritski3, Kristien Verdonck45, Eduardo Gotuzzo4 and Bernardo Galvão-Castro12*

Author Affiliations

1 Escola Bahiana de Medicina e Saúde Pública, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

2 Laboratório Avançado de Saúde Pública, Centro de Pesquisas Gonçalo Moniz, Fiocruz, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

3 Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro,Faculdade de Medicina, RJ, Brazil

4 Instituto de Medicina Tropical Alexander von Humboldt, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru

5 Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium

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Retrovirology 2011, 8(Suppl 1):A80  doi:10.1186/1742-4690-8-S1-A80

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published:6 June 2011

© 2011 Arruda et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


HTLV-1 infection alters the immune function and increases the risk of several infectious diseases. In this meta-analysis, we assess the association between HTLV- 1/2 and active tuberculosis (TB).


Four databases were searched for relevant articles that describe the frequency of HTLV- 1/2 infection among TB patients and control groups of healthy individuals or patients without a history of TB. Data were analyzed using the EasyMA software.


The search yielded two hundred and eight articles. Six met the inclusion criteria and were included in the meta-analysis. The estimated relative risk of HTLV- 1/2 infection in TB patients was 3.25 times higher than in the population based control groups.


Patients with active TB have a higher risk of HTLV- 1/2 infection. Prospective studies involving latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) in HTLV-1-infected individuals are necessary to evaluate the potential benefit of TB chemoprophylaxis.