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New research on inherited herpesvirus may have implications for transplantation
Date:9/20/2013

ome is intact (has all of the genes required to reactivate). They showed that the telomere with the virus is unstable - prone to sudden deletions resulting in a very short telomere that may cause further instability. This facilitates release of the viral genome. Dr Royle proposes that the virus uses normal telomere processes to escape from the chromosome and that this may represents the first step towards viral reactivation.

Dr Royle said the research may have important implications in a transplant setting because those seeking transplants are immunosuppressed, in order to stop their bodies rejecting the donor's organ. If the donor is one of the half a million people with CI-HHV-6 there may be a risk to the organ recipient or an impact on the transplanted organ, either through viral reactivation or through the effect on the telomere. Until further research is conducted to determine whether or not there is an increased risk, it may be prudent to screen organ donors for the inherited form of HHV-6.

Future research in Dr Royle's laboratory will seek to determine how often the HHV-6 escapes from the telomere and what controls this. Researchers also seek to understand how telomere shortening due to age could influence the rate of HHV-6 release from the chromosome. It is predicted that this could increase the risk reactivation.


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Contact: Dr. Nicola Royle
njr@le.ac.uk
01-162-522-270
University of Leicester
Source:Eurekalert

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