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Hum Pathol. 2000 Mar;31(3):394-5.

JC virus in human glial-derived tumors.

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Fondazione Don C. Gnocchi, IRCCS, Cattedra di Virologia, Università di Milano, Milan, Italy.


To investigate the presence and the role of polyomaviruses JC (JCV), BK (BKV), and the simian polyomavirus (SV40) in human brain tumors, samples from 25 glial-derived tumors (10 astrocytomas, 5 ependymomas, 5 oligodendrogliomas, and 5 glioblastomas) were examined by means of molecular biology and immunohistochemistry. Nested PCR of the large T (LT) region and its sequence analysis showed JCV in 6 cases (4 astrocytomas, 1 oligodendroglioma, and 1 ependymoma), while the transcriptional control region (TCR) was amplified only in 1 astrocytoma, the oligodendroglioma, and the ependymoma, one of which (astrocytoma) also stained positively by immunohistochemistry (JCV LT). TCR sequence analysis of the oligodendroglioma showed a JCV rearranged structure not related to a known viral strain, while the astrocytoma and the ependymoma disclosed a JCV Mad-4 strain that is known to induce brain tumors in animals. We suggest that JCV could have played a role in the pathogenesis of these brain tumors.

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