Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Expert Rev Mol Med. 2005 Aug 10;7(15):1-24.

Molecular and therapeutic aspects of varicella-zoster virus infection.

Author information

  • 1Skin Virus Laboratory, Institute of Cell and Molecular Science, 4 Newark Street, Whitechapel, London, E1 28E, UK.


Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) is a highly species-specific member of the Herpesviridae family. The virus exhibits multiple cell tropisms, infecting peripheral blood mononuclear cells and skin cells before establishing latency in sensory neurons. Such tropisms are essential both for primary infection, which manifests itself as chickenpox (varicella), and subsequent reactivation to cause herpes zoster (shingles). The highly cell-associated nature of the virus, coupled with its narrow host range, has resulted in the lack of an animal model that mimics its diseases in humans, thereby greatly hindering the study of events in VZV pathogenesis. Despite this, extensive studies both in vitro and in vivo in small-animal models have provided a fascinating insight into molecular events that govern VZV diseases. In addition, VZV has become the first human herpes virus for which a live attenuated vaccine has been developed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Cambridge University Press
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk