Kaposi Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus (KSHV) Seroprevalence in Population-Based Samples of African Children: Evidence for At Least 2 Patterns of KSHV Transmission
ABSTRACT Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) infection is endemic among adult populations in Africa. A prevailing view is that childhood transmission is primarily responsible for the high seroprevalence of KSHV among adults that is observed throughout the continent. However, few studies have directly examined children, particularly in locations where KS is not commonly endemic.
Participants were children aged 1.5-8.9 years, including 427 children from a population-based sample in South Africa, 422 from a population-based sample in Uganda, and 567 from a clinic-based sample in Uganda. All serum specimens were tested by the same laboratory for KSHV antibodies with use of 2 enzyme immunoassays (against K8.1 and ORF65) and 1 immunofluorescence assay.
KSHV seroprevalence was 7.5%-9.0% among South African children and was not associated with age. In contrast, in the Ugandan population-based sample, KSHV seroprevalence increased from 10% among 2-year-old children to 30.6% among 8-year-old children (P(trend) < .001). In the Ugandan clinic-based sample, seroprevalence increased from 9.3% among 2-year-old children to 36.4% among 8-year-old children (P(trend) < .001).
Two distinct relationships between age and KSHV infection among children imply that KSHV transmission among children is not uniform throughout Africa and is therefore not always responsible for the high seroprevalence observed in adults. There are at least 2 patterns of KSHV transmission in Africa.
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ABSTRACT: Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), caused by KS-associated herpesvirus (KSHV), is the most common cancer among HIV-infected patients in Malawi and in the United States today. In Malawi, KSHV is endemic. We conducted a cross-sectional study of patients with HIV infection and KS with no history of chemo- or antiretroviral therapy (ART). Seventy patients were enrolled. Eighty-one percent had T1 (advanced) KS. Median CD4 and HIV RNA levels were 181 cells/mm(3) and 138,641 copies/ml, respectively. We had complete information and suitable plasma and biopsy samples for 66 patients. For 59/66 (89%) patients, a detectable KSHV load was found in plasma (median, 2,291 copies/ml; interquartile range [IQR], 741 to 5,623). We utilized a novel KSHV real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) array with multiple primers per open reading frame to examine KSHV transcription. Seventeen samples exhibited only minimal levels of KSHV mRNAs, presumably due to the limited number of infected cells. For all other biopsy samples, the viral latency locus (LANA, vCyc, vFLIP, kaposin, and microRNAs [miRNAs]) was transcribed abundantly, as was K15 mRNA. We could identify two subtypes of treatment-naive KS: lesions that transcribed viral RNAs across the length of the viral genome and lesions that displayed only limited transcription restricted to the latency locus. This finding demonstrates for the first time the existence of multiple subtypes of KS lesions in HIV- and KS-treatment naive patients.mBio 08/2014; 5(5). DOI:10.1128/mBio.01633-14 · 6.88 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Conjugative plasmids have been identified in a wide variety of different bacteria, ranging from proteobacteria to firmicutes, and conjugation is one of the most efficient routes for horizontal gene transfer. The most widespread mechanism of plasmid conjugation relies on different variants of the type IV secretion pathway. Here, we describe the identification of a novel type of conjugative plasmid that seems to be unique for mycobacteria. Interestingly, while this plasmid is efficiently exchanged between different species of slow-growing mycobacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis, it could not be transferred to any of the fast-growing mycobacteria tested. Genetic analysis of the conjugative plasmid showed the presence of a locus containing homologues of three type IV secretion system components and a relaxase. In addition, a new type VII secretion locus was present. Using transposon insertion mutagenesis, we show that in fact both these secretion systems are essential for conjugation, indicating that this plasmid represents a new class of conjugative plasmids requiring two secretion machineries. This plasmid could form a useful new tool to exchange or introduce DNA in slow-growing mycobacteria.mBio 08/2014; 5(5). DOI:10.1128/mBio.01744-14 · 6.88 Impact Factor