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J Med Virol. 1999 May;58(1):69-75.

Fine mapping of an apparently targeted latent human herpesvirus type 6 integration site in chromosome band 17p13.3.

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Department of Pathology, Christchurch School of Medicine, New Zealand.


An unusually high level of latent HHV-6 infection has been documented in the peripheral blood and/or bone marrow cells of a small group of patients with predominantly malignant lymphoid disorders, and in at least one healthy individual. We have shown previously in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of three patients, two with a history of lymphoma and one with multiple sclerosis, a specific target site for latent integration of the full-length HHV-6 viral genome on the distal short arm of chromosome 17, in band p13.3. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) procedures were used to map more precisely the location of the viral integration site in one of those patients, relative to two known oncogenes mapped previously, namely CRK, and the more telomeric ABR oncogene. It is shown that the HHV-6 integration site is located at least 1,000 kb telomeric of ABR, and is very likely to map close to or within the telomeric sequences of 17p. This finding is significant given that human telomeric-like repeats flank the terminal ends of the HHV-6 genome. Cytogenetic studies showed evidence of karyotype instability in the peripheral blood cells infected latently.

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