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J Infect Dis. 2001 Jan 15;183(2):179-184. Epub 2000 Dec 15.

Human beta-herpesvirus interactions in solid organ transplant recipients.

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Division of Infectious Diseases, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.


The replication of beta-herpesviruses-cytomegalovirus (CMV), human herpesvirus (HHV)-6, and HHV-7-and their association with CMV disease and response to antiviral therapy were prospectively investigated in 33 liver transplant recipients not given antiviral prophylaxis. CMV, HHV-6, and HHV-7 DNA were detected within 8 weeks after transplantation in 70%, 33%, and 42% of the patients, respectively. The univariate association between CMV disease and the 3 beta-herpesviruses was more significant by virus load quantitation than by qualitative detection of DNA. This association with high levels of CMV, HHV-6, and HHV-7 (P<.001,.022, and.001, respectively) occurred mainly in CMV-seronegative recipients of transplants from CMV-seropositive donors. Antiviral therapy with ganciclovir (Gcv) reduced the load of CMV and HHV-6 and HHV-7. These results suggest that CMV disease in transplant recipients is related to the unique interaction of the 3 beta-herpesviruses and is ultimately reduced after intravenous Gcv treatment.

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