After primary infection, human herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) persists in latent form and can be reactivated in immunocompromised subjects. A longitudinal study of HHV-6 infection was carried out in two HIV-1 seropositive patients to provide in vivo evidence of HHV-6 reactivation. Concomitant with a significant rise of anti-HHV-6 IgG detected by IFA, a transient increase of HHV-6 viral load was shown in PBLs by PCR. During HHV-6 reactivation it was also identified either cell-free HHV-6 by PCR in plasma or IgM antibody titers. HHV-6 reactivation was followed by a temporary decrease in CD4+ count and by a progressive dramatic loss of CD4+ during the following 18 months. HHV-6 strain characterization by PCR demonstrated that first patient (MM) initially showed the B variant, followed by reactivation and persistence of the A variant, while in the second (SG) only the A variant was detected. The evidence of HHV-6 reactivation suggests its involvement in immunologic damage underlying the disease.
Human herpesvirus-6 reactivation in a longitudinal study of two HIV-1 infected patients / Iuliano, R; Trovato, R; Lico, S; Luppi, Mario; Forastieri, G; Barsanti, La; Pizzigallo, Am; Mecocci, L; Barozzi, Patrizia; Torelli, Giuseppe; Mazzotta, F; Ceccherininelli, L.. - In: JOURNAL OF MEDICAL VIROLOGY. - ISSN 0146-6615. - STAMPA. - 51:(1997), pp. 259-264.