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logoCurrent estimates suggest that 20% of all human cancers have viral origin or require viral infection as an essential cofactor. Our research seeks to understand viral tumorigenesis, specifically cancers caused by Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV/HHV-8). KSHV is a double-stranded DNA virus belonging to the Rhadinovirus family of human herpesviruses. It was discovered in 1994 and is associated with Kaposi’s sarcoma (KS) as well as B-cell cancers like primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) and multicentric Castleman’s disease (MCD). These diseases affect internal organs and are ultimately fatal; they are usually seen in the U.S. among immunosuppressed individuals like HIV-positive individuals and transplant patients.


Latest News

  • Model Shows Covid Spread Slowing if these two conditions are met. Model shows COVID spread slowing this winter if these two important conditions are met :: New projections from an epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill paint a positive picture of herd immunity and fewer COVID-19 cases through the coming winter.

  • On the Record: What’s next in the coronavirus pandemic? :: We are living in the pandemic that won’t go away, and the upswing in Delta variant COVID-19 is a gut punch for people who thought we were turning a corner. Masks are coming back. Vaccines protect …

  • $15 million NC project launching soon to track COVID-19 variants.

    CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — COVID-19 cases have more than tripled since the beginning of the month in North Carolina. Since the beginning of July, 38 percent of coronavirus samples in North Carolina that were tested for the Delta variant came back positive for it. A $15 million program is launching in North Carolina to … Continued

  • COVID-19: Our Work in the News

    Our work in COVID-19 research has been featured in multiple news reports and interviews with Dr. Dirk Dittmer: 2021, July 20: $15 million NC project launching soon to track COVID-19 variants by Bridget Chapman with CBS17 2021, July 19:  The sequencing study was also picked up by DeJuan Hoggard with ABC. 2021, Feb 9: Interview with Maggie … Continued

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About the Lab

Click here to read more about the research interests, goals and methods of the Dittmer Lab.

A list of publications is available on PubMed or go to Publications for complete downloadable .pdf files.

The lab over the years