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Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes. 2010 Oct;17(5):418-24. doi: 10.1097/MED.0b013e32833cf518.

Viral infection in induction of Hashimoto's thyroiditis: a key player or just a bystander?

Author information

1
Division of Nephrology, Endocrinology and Vascular Medicine, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Japan. mail: kokimori@mail.tains.tohoku.ac.jp

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW:

Viral infection activates both the innate and adaptive immunity and is implicated as a trigger of autoimmune diseases including Hashimoto's thyroiditis. This review summarizes our knowledge respecting the role of viral infection in the cause of Hashimoto's thyroiditis.

RECENT FINDINGS:

Components of several viruses such as hepatitis C virus, human parvovirus B19, coxsackie virus and herpes virus are detected in the thyroid of Hashimoto's thyroiditis patients. Bystander activation of autoreactive T cells may be involved in triggering intrathyroidal inflammation. Signaling molecules associated with antiviral responses including Toll-like receptors may participate in Hashimoto's thyroiditis induction. However, studies have provided insufficient direct evidence for the viral hypothesis in Hashimoto's thyroiditis.

SUMMARY:

Despite interesting circumstantial evidence, whether viral infection is responsible for Hashimoto's thyroiditis remains unclear. Studies addressing this issue are required to substantiate a contribution from viral infection to Hashimoto's thyroiditis and, consequently, the prospect for developing preventive modalities for Hashimoto's thyroiditis.

PMID:
20625285
DOI:
10.1097/MED.0b013e32833cf518
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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