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The novel non-synonymous mutations found in this study enrich the knowledge about the genetic alterations of TK and DNA pol genes in ACV-resistant clinical HSV strains. Together with data from the literature, the findings justify the generation of a HSV database that contains resistance mutations associated with ACV resistance phenotype.
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We have investigated the effects of thymidine kinase-mediated gene therapy in a malignant rat BT4C glioma by using 1H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy in vivo. Ganciclovir has been successfully used in thymidine kinase gene therapy as treatment for various experimental malignancies. The cell damaging effect seems to be mediated by apoptosis, optimally leading to eradication of tumor tissue. In this study, we show that ganciclovir treatment of tumors transfected with the herpes simplex thymidine kinase gene causes profound changes in water, metabolites, and macromolecules observable by diffusion spectroscopy. During treatment, a 50% reduction from 0.14 +/- 0.01 x 10(-9) m2/s in the apparent diffusion coefficient of choline-containing compounds can be observed, concomitant with a 219% increase in the apparent diffusion coefficient of the rapidly diffusing water component. These changes are associated with an increase in the relative fraction of this water component from 87 to 94%. The apparent diffusion coefficients of the slowly diffusing water component and macromolecules remain unaltered. The results imply a reduction in cell size and number, a significant increase in intracellular viscosity, and a possible reduction in the hydrodynamic radii of macromolecular components, which are ascribed as biophysical signatures for apoptotic cell death.
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A simple high-performance liquid chromatographic method using fluorescence detection was developed for the determination of acyclovir in human plasma. The method entailed direct injection of the plasma sample after deproteination. It is both specific and sensitive with a detection limit of 30 ng/ml at a signal-to-noise ratio of 3:1, and is thus suitable for use in pharmacokinetic studies of acyclovir. The method had a mean absolute recovery of 96%, while the within-day and between-day coefficients of variation and percentages error were all less than 8%. The calibration curve was linear over a concentration range of 62.5-4000 ng/ml.
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Oral ganciclovir prophylaxis for 24 weeks is associated with a lower risk of symptomatic CMV disease than a 12-week course in high risk D+/R- kidney recipients.
The plaques or foci of certain viruses due to their small size have to be counted microscopically, e.g., human cytomegalovirus (HCMV). The focus luminescence assay (FLA) described below generates macroscopic images as a result of the magnification due to scattered emitted light, and provides a hard copy using autoradiography or video imaging. Foci are detected according to an immunohistochemical protocol with horseradish peroxidase or alkaline phosphatase antibody conjugates which convert substrate into a luminescent product. Detection of varicella zoster virus (VZV) foci developed with a specific substrate-enhancer combination was so sensitive that 20-times lower primary antibody concentrations were effective than those required for conventional immunohistochemical staining. This method for HCMV and VZV may allow quantitative infectivity and focus reduction assays for viruses which produce little or no CPE.
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The effect of protease inhibitors (PIs) on the outcome of AIDS-associated cytomegalovirus (CMV) colitis is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of PIs on the recurrence of CMV disease and long-term survival in a large cohort of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients with CMV colitis. We reviewed the medical records of 252 AIDS patients who were diagnosed with CMV colitis by colonoscopy between January 1992 and January 1997 at Bellevue Hospital (New York, NY, U.S.A.). Follow-up data were obtained from chart review and direct telephone contact. A complete response to ganciclovir and/or foscarnet therapy was seen in 87.0% of the patients. Recurrence of CMV colitis occurred in 53.1% of patients and was significantly less common in those who received maintenance therapy (36.1% vs. 56.7%; p = 0.03) and in those who were treated with PIs (22.8% vs. 71.9%; p < 0.001). During follow-up. 69.3% of patients died. Multivariate analysis using Cox regression showed that mortality was increased in patients with recurrent CMV colitis (relative risk [RR] of death, 1.7: 95% CI, 1.1-2.6; p = 0.02) and comorbid disease (RR, 1.5: 95% CI, 1.1-2.2; p = 0.02), and decreased in those who were treated with PIs (RR, 0.42; 95% CI, 0.3-0.7; p = 0.001). The median survival was 71 weeks and was significantly longer in patients who were treated with PIs than in those who did not receive these potent anti-retroviral medications (99 vs. 51 weeks; p < 0.001). PIs significantly improve the outcome of AIDS-associated CMV colitis.
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9-Carboxymethoxymethylguanine (CMMG), the main metabolite of aciclovir (ACV), is a putative neurotoxin. Measurement of CMMG in body fluids may aid patient management. We describe the development, validation and application of a high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method for the simultaneous determination of ACV and CMMG in human serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Recovery was between 94% and 100% at all concentrations both from serum (range 0-20 mg/L) and CSF (0-5 mg/L). The intra-assay precision (coefficient of variation (CV)) was <2% and the inter-assay precision (CV) was <5%. The limits of detection and quantification were 0.1 and 0.25 mg/L, respectively, in both body fluids. Significant interference from endogenous material or from drugs in clinical samples was not seen. CMMG was detected in most of the 55 clinical samples containing ACV, but little correlation was found between the levels of the drug and its metabolite.
Lung cancer is a group of diseases that are difficult to cure and new treatment modalities, like gene therapy are actively tested to find alternatives for currently used strategies. Herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase/ganciclovir (HSV-TK/GCV) method is one of the most frequently utilized forms of gene therapy and it has been tested on lung cancer, but no systematic study with comparison of different lung cancer types has been published. In this study, we examined in vitro and in vivo how good targets non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines representing adenocarcinoma, squamous cell lung cancer and large cell lung cancer are for adenovirus-mediated HSV-TK/GCV gene therapy. By using an adenovirus vector carrying a fusion gene of HSV-TK and green fluorescent protein (GFP), we found that: a) adenoviruses were efficient gene transfer vehicles for all types of NSCLCs; b) all adenocarcinoma and large cell lung cancer cells were good targets for HSV-TK/GCV therapy, whereas one of the squamous cell carcinoma cell lines was not responsive to the treatment; c) bystander effect played a major role in the success of this gene therapy form; d) subcutaneous tumors representing all three NSCLC types were efficiently treated with adenovirus-mediated HSV-TK/GCV gene therapy. In summary, this form of gene therapy appeared to be efficient treatment for human NSCLC and these results warrant further studies with primary lung cancer cells and orthotopic lung tumor models.
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Herpes zoster infection has previously been reported as a frequent complication of liver transplantation. Our study suggests that it occurs in approximately 16% of patients receiving induction therapy with alemtuzumab. Although alemtuzumab is a powerful immunosuppressive agent and there is still little information regarding its long-term safety when used in liver transplantation, our data do not suggest any increase in the occurrence and complications of HZ.
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The authors report a case of a 47-year-old cytomegalovirus (CMV) immunoglobulin G (IgG) seropositive male patient with end stage renal disease who received a live renal transplant from a CMV IgG seropositive donor. Six months post-transplantation, the patient presented with reduced renal allograft function associated with fever, severe breathlessness, new onset jaundice and pancytopenia. His CMV DNA PCR came positive. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA PCR also came positive (genotype I) though anti-HCV test performed before and after transplantation was negative. The patient was treated with oral valganciclovir and showed improvement of his clinical condition and was subsequently discharged under supervised therapy. However, the patient could not be treated for HCV because of risk of renal allograft rejection. The authors suggest oral valganciclovir for management of CMV infection and proper detection and eradication of HCV before renal transplantation to avoid future complications and prolongation of allograft survival.
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Previously, we discovered geldanamycin, a ligand of heat shock protein 90, effectively inhibited herpes simplex virus type 1 replication in vitro and in vivo (mouse encephalitis model). In this study, we demonstrate that geldanamycin has very strong activities against herpes simplex virus type 2 in vitro and in vivo (mouse vagina model). In mouse vagina model, administration of geldanamycin suspension to vagina after virus infection protected the infected mice from death and increased the average survival days in a dose-dependent manner. Geldanamycin also significantly reduced virus shedding from mouse vagina. All geldanamycin-treated groups were statistically significant when compared with the infected control group. The high-dose group of geldanamycin (5.72 mg kg(-1)) was better than acyclovir group (2.86 mg kg(-1)). All geldanamycin vaginal administration mock-infected groups did not show significant body weight loss. Although geldanamycin has strong antiviral activities against various DNA and RNA viruses, geldanamycin is not suitable for systemic administration because of its high toxicity. We consider that geldanamycin is a candidate of topical usage for the treatment of herpes simplex virus type infections.
Forty-two patients (22%) developed VZV infections: localized (n=37) and disseminated infection (n=5). The incidence of VZV infection at 1 and 3 years was 19.3+/-3.3% and 36.8+/-5.2%, respectively. Complications included post-herpetic neuralgia (n=18, 43%), secondary bacterial infections (n=3), and intracranial hemorrhage (n=1) with 2 deaths. A higher risk factor for VZV infection was pre-transplant diagnosis of a lymphoproliferative disorder (LPD): chronic lymphocytic leukemia, Hodgkin's disease, or non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (P=0.021, 52.5% in LPD vs. 32.6% in non-LPD group). The use of low-dose acyclovir prophylaxis (P=0.043, 14.7% in acyclovir vs. 41.6% in nonacyclovir group) was found to be protective. Although no VZV infection episodes were noted during the period of acyclovir prophylaxis, 3 episodes of VZV infection were noted after acyclovir cessation.
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Herpes simplex virus is one of the most common causes of genital ulcer disease worldwide. Herpes simplex virus-2 is the more common cause of genital herpes, a chronic infection that is characterised by periodic reactivation, with the capacity to produce recurrent symptomatic disease in the host (e.g., vesicular eruption), as well as intermittent asymptomatic shedding. Relapsing episodes may be physically and psychologically distressing. Shedding accounts for the majority of cases of transmission of genital herpes to sexual partners. Pregnant women who are shedding may transmit the virus at the time of delivery, with severe and potentially fatal consequences to the baby. Famciclovir, a synthetic acyclic guanine derivative, is the prodrug of penciclovir, which demonstrates in vitro antiviral activity against various types of herpes virus, including herpes simplex virus-2. Its pharmacokinetics allow for administration in a convenient dosing regimen compared with acyclovir, which may improve compliance. Clinical studies have demonstrated its efficacy in the episodic treatment of relapses, with the most recent report demonstrating its efficacy and tolerance as a single-day treatment. It is also efficacious and well tolerated for the suppression of frequently recurring episodes. These results have been demonstrated in various patient populations, including immunocompetent patients and those infected with HIV. Famciclovir is well tolerated, with an adverse events profile similar to placebo.
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With ABT 50 mg, median TTH of primary vesicular lesion was reduced (7 days vs 7.3 days, P=.015), the incidence of blocked herpes episodes was increased by 24.2% (34.9% vs 28.1%; P=.042), and the median duration of herpes episodes was reduced (5.6 days vs 6.4 days, P=.003). During the 9-month follow-up period, recurrence of herpes lesions was less frequent (64.2% vs 73.6%; P=.027) and delayed (205 days vs 165 days, P=.041) in the ABT 50 mg. Both treatments were safe.
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CMV end-organ disease and antiviral resistant strains only occurred in D+R- recipients despite the use of prophylaxis in these patients. The D+R- recipients commencing prophylaxis immediately following transplantation had better outcomes compared to those for whom prophylaxis was delayed due to renal impairment. Prophylaxis reduced the incidence of CMV DNAemia, persistent infection, and high viral loads for CMV seropositive (D-R+and D+R+) recipients, but laboratory-guided preemptive therapy effectively controlled CMV infection and prevented disease in these OLT recipients.
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A retrospective cohort study of herpes zoster infections in dermatomyositis/polymyositis patients was performed. The patients were followed at a tertiary center from 1991 to 2012. For the control group, each patient with herpes zoster was paired with two patients without herpes zoster. Patients were matched by gender and the type of myositis, age at myositis onset and disease duration.
In order to determine the impact of chickenpox on the general population, we conducted a retrospective study in four medical centres in central Israel. Hospital records of 182 patients discharged with the diagnosis of varicella during a 3-y period were reviewed. The patients' mean age was 7.9 y. A total of 14 patients (8%) were immunocompromised. Bacterial skin or soft tissue infection was the most common complication (32%). Other complications included gastrointestinal manifestations (14%), pneumonia (12%), febrile seizures (10%) and CNS complications (9%). Twenty-one percent of patients were discharged with the diagnosis of uncomplicated varicella. One patient died, one underwent liver transplantation for liver failure and four had persistent neurological sequelae. Forty-four patients (24%) received acyclovir for an average duration of 5.7 d. The mean hospital stay was 4.3 d; it was significantly longer for patients with CNS complications (8 d). We estimate that the hospitalization rate in Israel is 1/285 cases of chickenpox. While mortality from varicella was found to be relatively rare, the economic burden of this infection in Israel is quite substantial.
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A 36-year-old woman underwent ABO-incompatible living-donor kidney transplantation. Immunosuppression was achieved by quadruple therapy with tacrolimus, basiliximab, mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), and prednisone. Desensitization and removal of anti-ABO antibody was achieved by administration of MMF for 4 weeks before transplantation followed by intravenous administration of rituximab, double-filtered plasmapheresis, and plasma exchange. At 1 month after transplantation, she complained of left ear pain without vesicle rash, tinnitus, and vertigo. Physical examination revealed left facial paralysis and nystagmus. T2 fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) visualized swelling of the left facial nerve. Real-time polymerase chain reaction showed the existence of varicella zoster virus DNA in the patient's tears and saliva. The final diagnosis was Ramsay Hunt syndrome without vesicle rash, which is called zoster sine herpete. The patient was treated by intravenous administration of acyclovir (3 mg/kg, 3 times per day) in addition to the reduction of the MMF dose. For facial nerve palsy, prednisolone was prescribed for 3 days and then gradually tapered. These treatments improved the symptoms of tinnitus and vertigo after a month; the facial nerve palsy completely disappeared after 10 months. This case demonstrated MRI to be a useful modality for the early diagnosis of Ramsay Hunt syndrome without vesicle eruption.
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Retrospective, interventional, small case series.
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Fifty-four patients with herpes zoster were treated with valacyclovir. On treatment days 1, 8, and 15, pain was scored and saliva examined for varicella-zoster virus (VZV) DNA. VZV DNA was found in every patient the day treatment was started and later disappeared in 82%. There was a positive correlation between the presence of VZV DNA and pain and between VZV DNA copy number and pain (P <.0005). VZV DNA was present in 1 patient before rash and in 4 after pain resolved and was not present in any of 6 subjects with chronic pain or in 14 healthy subjects. Analysis of human saliva has potential usefulness in the diagnosis of neurological disease produced by VZV without rash.
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This case report is about an elderly man who presented with a long-standing history of high-grade fever and weight loss. He initially had only hepatosplenomegaly, but then developed jaundice. He also had pancytopenia and raised liver enzymes. His septic screen was negative, but he had a positive Monospot test and immunoglobulin G for Epstein-Barr virus. The liver biopsy showed sinusoidal phagocytosis and the subsequent bone marrow aspiration and biopsy showed significant hemophagocytosis, hence Hemophagocytic syndrome was diagnosed. The fever was refractory to antibiotic and anti-tuberculosis therapy, but it responded only partially to steroids. Full response was only noticed following anti-viral treatment in the form of intravenous Ganciclovir. The patient's general condition, liver enzymes, bilirubin, hematological parameters and even the weight returned back to their normal range 2 weeks after Ganciclovir therapy. Cessation of this drug resulted in relapse of his symptoms and oral antivirals did not help. Splenectomy, steroid pulse therapy and immunosuppressive treatment were only partially helpful. Reintroduction of Ganciclovir did help for a short period. We conclude that our patient had virus-associated hemophagocytic syndrome most likely related to Epstein-Barr virus infection, which was then confirmed by the splenic biopsy, and that Ganciclovir can be of great help in eradicating the virus and treating the disease, provided that it is given for a long enough period.