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J Med Virol. 2015 Jul;87(7):1235-40. doi: 10.1002/jmv.24172. Epub 2015 Mar 13.

Presence of herpesvirus DNA in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with tick-borne encephalitis and enteroviral meningoencephalitis.

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1st Department of Infectious Diseases, 2nd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University in Prague and Bulovka University Hospital, Czech Republic; National Institute of Public Health, Centre for Epidemiology and Microbiology, Prague, Czech Republic.


Reactivation of HHVs in the CNS due to inflammation has not been well described yet. The primary aim of this study was to investigate the frequency of HHV DNA detection in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of immunocompetent patients with meningoencephalitis of other than HHV origin. The secondary aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of herpesvirus co-infection on the clinical course and patient outcome. Ninety-six patients with clinically and laboratory proven tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) and 77 patients with a confirmed diagnosis of enteroviral meningitis (EVM), along with a control group of 107 patients without evidence of inflammation in the CSF were retrospectively tested by nested PCR for the presence of DNA of the neurotropic herpesviruses HSV1, HSV2, VZV, and HHV6 in the CSF. The clinical course, laboratory tests, antiviral treatment, and neurological complications in a 6-month follow-up were compared between the groups positive or negative for HHV DNA in the CSF. HHV DNA was found in the CSF of 12 (6.9%) patients (6.3% and 7.8% in the TBE and EVM groups, respectively) and in 1 (0.9%) control patient. None of the patients had recent blisters or rash. The clinical course was comparably mild in all patients. No permanent neurological sequelae were observed. Only the CSF total protein level was significantly higher in HHV DNA-positive than in HHV-negative patients.


cerebrospinal fluid; enteroviral meningoencephalitis; herpesvirus; tick-borne encephalitis

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