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J Invest Dermatol. 1996 Sep;107(3):308-13.

Failure to detect human T-lymphotropic virus type-I proviral DNA in cell lines and tissues from patients with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia 19104, USA.


Previous molecular studies investigating the presence of HTLV-I proviral DNA in cell lines and tissue samples of patients with cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) have reported a detection rate ranging from 0-92%. Despite the lack of epidemiologic data linking HTLV-I infection with CTCL, the molecular data still invite speculation regarding the precise role of HTLV-I in the pathogenesis of CTCL. To determine the detection rate of HTLV-I proviral DNA among CTCL patients referred to our medical center, we analyzed Epstein-Barr virus-transformed cell lines established from peripheral blood of seven CTCL patients and 43 tissue samples from 22 patients with different stages of disease. Genomic DNA was polymerase chain reaction-amplified with primers within the HTLV-I tax gene region. Amplification products were probed with nested oligonucleotide probes by Southern blot analysis. No HTLV-I proviral sequences were detected in the samples (0/50). Using HTLV-I/II pol primers, no HTLV-I pol gene sequences were detected. In tissues from one patient, HTLV-II pol and tax gene sequences were detected; however, HTLV-II proviral integration was not detected by Southern blot analysis of the genomic DNA. Our data suggest: (i) HTLV-I does not appear to be a primary etiologic agent in CTCL; and (ii) HTLV-II pol and tax gene sequences can be detected in a minority of CTCL patients, but this does not necessarily imply an etiologic role.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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