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BMC Genomics. 2013 Nov 19;14:804. doi: 10.1186/1471-2164-14-804.

Identification and characterization of EBV genomes in spontaneously immortalized human peripheral blood B lymphocytes by NGS technology.

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Tissue Microbiology Laboratory, Division of Cellular and Gene Therapies, Office of Cellular, Tissue and Gene Therapy, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, NIH Building 29B, Rm, 1NN06, 29 Lincoln Dr,, 20892-4555 Bethesda, MD, USA.



We conducted genomic sequencing to identify Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) genomes in 2 human peripheral blood B lymphocytes that underwent spontaneous immortalization promoted by mycoplasma infections in culture, using the high-throughput sequencing (HTS) Illumina MiSeq platform. The purpose of this study was to examine if rapid detection and characterization of a viral agent could be effectively achieved by HTS using a platform that has become readily available in general biology laboratories.


Raw read sequences, averaging 175 bps in length, were mapped with DNA databases of human, bacteria, fungi and virus genomes using the CLC Genomics Workbench bioinformatics tool. Overall 37,757 out of 49,520,834 total reads in one lymphocyte line (# K4413-Mi) and 28,178 out of 45,335,960 reads in the other lymphocyte line (# K4123-Mi) were identified as EBV sequences. The two EBV genomes with estimated 35.22-fold and 31.06-fold sequence coverage respectively, designated K4413-Mi EBV and K4123-Mi EBV (GenBank accession number KC440852 and KC440851 respectively), are characteristic of type-1 EBV.


Sequence comparison and phylogenetic analysis among K4413-Mi EBV, K4123-Mi EBV and the EBV genomes previously reported to GenBank as well as the NA12878 EBV genome assembled from database of the 1000 Genome Project showed that these 2 EBVs are most closely related to B95-8, an EBV previously isolated from a patient with infectious mononucleosis and WT-EBV. They are less similar to EBVs associated with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) from Hong Kong and China as well as the Akata strain of a case of Burkitt's lymphoma from Japan. They are most different from type 2 EBV found in Western African Burkitt's lymphoma.

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