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J Neurovirol. 2000 Oct;6(5):410-7.

A single tube PCR assay for simultaneous amplification of HSV-1/-2, VZV, CMV, HHV-6A/-6B, and EBV DNAs in cerebrospinal fluid from patients with virus-related neurological diseases.

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Department of Clinical Pathology, Showa University Fujigaoka Hospital, Yokohama, Japan.


Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) specimens from 27 patients with encephalitis, meningitis, and other neurological diseases were studied for the presence of herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2 (HSV-1/-2), varicella-zoster virus (VZV), cytomegalovirus (CMV), human herpesviruses 6A and 6B (HHV-6A/-6B) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) DNA using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. The DNAs were amplified using two sets of consensus primer pairs in a single tube, bringing simultaneous amplification of the herpesviruses. The PCR products were analyzed by agarose gel electrophoresis, and Southern blot hybridization with virus-type specific probes, thus allowing discrimination between the different types of herpesviruses to be made. Each virus-specific probe was highly specific for identifying the PCR product. Thirty CSF specimens from 13 patients with encephalitis and 10 specimens from 10 patients with meningitis, respectively, were examined using this method. Eight patients with encephalitis and six with meningitis were positive for different herpesviruses, including patients with coinfections (HSV-1/-2 and VZV, VZV and CMV). Among four CSF specimens from four patients with other neurological disorders, dual amplification of CMV and EBV was present. Since identification of the types of herpesviruses in this system requires a very small amount of CSF, and is completed with one PCR, it is useful for routine diagnosis of herpesvirus infections in diagnostic laboratories. The viruses responsible for central nervous system infection are easily detected with various coinfection and serial patterns of herpesviruses, by this consensus primer-based PCR method. This may give an insight into the relationship between virus-related neurological diseases (VRNDS) and herpesvirus infections.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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