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Cytomegalovirus-induced immunopathology and its clinical consequences

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Author(s): Varani Stefania | Landini Maria

Journal: Herpesviridae
ISSN 2042-4280

Volume: 2;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 6;
Date: 2011;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Abstract Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a ubiquitous DNA virus that causes severe disease in patients with immature or impaired immune systems. During active infection, CMV modulates host immunity, and CMV-infected patients often develop signs of immune dysfunction, such as immunosuppression and autoimmune phenomena. Furthermore, active viral infection has been observed in several autoimmune diseases, and case reports have linked primary CMV infection and the onset of autoimmune disorders. In addition, CMV infection promotes allograft rejection and graft-versus-host disease in solid organ and bone marrow transplant recipients, respectively, further implicating CMV in the genesis and maintenance of immunopathological phenomena. The mechanisms by which CMV could induce inhibition of host defense, inflammation, and autoimmunity are discussed, as is the treatment of virus-induced immunopathology with antivirals.
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