The following is a summary of “Association Between Cytomegalovirus Infection and Tuberculosis Disease: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Epidemiological Studies,” published in the February 2023 issue of Infectious Diseases by Kua, et al.

Tuberculosis is a widespread infectious disease that contributes significantly to global mortality. For a study, researchers sought to examine the connection between prior cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and tuberculosis disease.

Researchers searched six bibliographic databases from inception to December 31, 2021, and identified 15 articles that met their inclusion criteria, comprising a total sample size of 38,618 patients. 

The pooled findings revealed that people with CMV infection had a greater risk of tuberculosis disease than those without CMV infection, with an odds ratio (OR) of 3.20 (95% CI, 2.18–4.70). Age was the only factor that significantly influenced the association’s outcome. The meta-analysis of risk estimates from individual studies revealed a significant correlation between CMV infection and active tuberculosis (adjusted hazard ratio, 2.92; 95% CI, 1.34–4.51; adjusted OR, 1.14; 95% CI, .71–1.57). In addition, the risk of tuberculosis events was found to be directly linked to the levels of CMV antibodies (OR for high levels of CMV antibodies, 4.07; OR for medium levels of CMV antibodies, 3.58), implying a clear dose-response relationship.

In conclusion, the study demonstrated that prior CMV infection is associated with an elevated risk of tuberculosis disease.