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HHV-6 identified as a common cause of “idiopathic” pneumonia A pivotal study, led by Michael Boeckh at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, has determined that occult infections contribute to 57% of all cases of “idiopathic” pneumonia syndrome (IPS), a condition previously assumed to be non-infectious. HHV-6 was the dominant pathogen representing 29% of cases.
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Pathogenic role for HHV-6B in in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy Japanese investigators published findings suggesting that HHV-6B plays a pathogenic role in epilepsy by enhancing gene expression that induces neuroinflammation and sclerosis in the temporal lobe. HHV-6 DNA levels were significantly higher in the resected tissue of epilepsy patients with sclerosis compared to those without it.
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ciHHV-6 found in pediatric adrenocortical tumors Since the discovery of chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6), investigators have wondered about the potential consequences of having chromosome integrated HHV-6 in the genome.
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ICU patients with HHV-6 & CMV co-reactivation have poor outcome Intensive care (ICU) patients with co-infections of HHV-6 and CMV are 7.5x more likely to die or have an extended stay in the hospital. On the other hand, single infections with either HHV-6 or CMV did not significantly impact outcome.
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Featured News

  • ciHHV-6 is a risk factor for angina pectoris ciHHV-6 is a risk factor for angina pectoris
    In an article published this month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Dr. Louis Flamand’s team has described a relationship between inherited chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (iciHHV-6) and the development of angina pectoris.
  • HHV-6 identified as a common cause of “idiopathic” pneumonia HHV-6 identified as a common cause of “idiopathic” pneumonia
    A pivotal study, led by Michael Boeckh at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, has determined that occult infections contribute to 57% of all cases of “idiopathic” pneumonia syndrome (IPS), a condition previously assumed to be non-infectious. HHV-6 was the dominant pathogen representing 29% of cases.
  • Pathogenic role for HHV-6B in in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy Pathogenic role for HHV-6B in in mesial temporal lobe epilepsy
    Japanese investigators published findings suggesting that HHV-6B plays a pathogenic role in epilepsy by enhancing gene expression that induces neuroinflammation and sclerosis in the temporal lobe. HHV-6 DNA levels were significantly higher in the resected tissue of epilepsy patients with sclerosis compared to those without it.
  • ciHHV-6 found in pediatric adrenocortical tumors ciHHV-6 found in pediatric adrenocortical tumors
    Since the discovery of chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6), investigators have wondered about the potential consequences of having chromosome integrated HHV-6 in the genome.
  • Elevated levels of HHV-6 DNA in Alzheimer’s, linked to variants in antiviral genes
    A group from Italy’s University of Bologna report that genetic defects in antimicrobial defense mechanisms can leave some individuals vulnerable to sub-clinical infections that lead to cognitive decline as they age. They found variations in specific antiviral genes that correlate with HHV-6 DNA levels in brain tissue and blood from patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • ICU patients with HHV-6 & CMV co-reactivation have poor outcome ICU patients with HHV-6 & CMV co-reactivation have poor outcome
    Intensive care (ICU) patients with co-infections of HHV-6 and CMV are 7.5x more likely to die or have an extended stay in the hospital. On the other hand, single infections with either HHV-6 or CMV did not significantly impact outcome.
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Latest HHV-6 Research

  • Joshua Hill awarded a 5-year grant to study HHV-6
    Congratulations to Joshua Hill, MD, Acting Instructor at the University of Washington and Research Associate at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, who has won a K23 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to study HHV-6 in lower respiratory tract disease and chromosomally integrated HHV-6 after stem cell transplantation (SCT). The […]
  • HHV-6 induced kidney damage in drug hypersensitivity
    For the first time, a case study has been conducted to study whether HHV-6 might play a role in the multi-organ failure that often follows extreme cases of drug hypersensitivity. The mortality rate from severe drug hypersensitivity is approximately 10%,
  • Epstein-Barr Virus and Human herpes virus 6 Type A DNA Enhance IL-17 Production in Mice
    Since both HHV-6 and EBV have been associated with an increased risk of autoimmune disease development, a group at the American University of Beirut studied whether viral DNA might be capable of triggering IL-17, a cytokine associated with autoimmune disease. They injected BALB/c mice intraperitoneally with either EBV or HHV-6A DNA. They found that both IL-17 and IL-23 were markedly elevated.
  • Pediatric drug hypersensitivity cases with HHV-6 reactivation have a more severe disease and longer hospital stays
    A group at the University of Pennsylvania performed a retroactive study of 29 pediatric patients hospitalized with drug hypersensitivity reactions and found that those who reactivated with HHV-6 had longer lengths of stay (11.5 days vs. 5. days) and more severe illness. They were not able to determine the impact of steroid administration in HHV-6 positive patients.
  • Heart failure worsens in patients with persistent HHV-6B positive biopsies
    Numerous case reports and studies have now tied HHV-6 to myocarditis and cardiomyopathies. To further investigate this relationship, investigators from one of the top cardiology clinics in Europe performed a study to determine the outcome of patients discovered to have HHV-6 in their cardiac tissue during the initial biopsy screen.
  • ApoE4+ epilepsy patients have higher HHV-6B viral loads and more seizures
    A team of Chinese investigators led by Dr. Jin-Mei Li at West China Hospital has identified a possible synergy between a polymorphism of Apolipoprotein E (ApoE) and HHV-6B infection, resulting in a higher viral load and seizure frequency in these patients.
  • High HHV-6B viral loads found in a subset of epilepsy brain resections
    Investigators at the University of Bonn Medical Center in Germany have screened 346 fresh-frozen brain tissue resections from temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) patients for all nine herpesviruses as well as for RNA viruses including Paramyxovirinae, Phleboviruses, Enteroviruses, and Flavivirus, using qPCR. HHV-6B was the only virus identified.
  • Cleveland clinic group finds important miRNA for HHV-6A
    Investigators led by Eain Murphy of Cleveland Clinic have identified a viral microRNA (miRNA) for HHV-6A, named miR-U86, that targets the HHV-6A intermediate early gene U86.
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Repository of Reagents

Reagents for conducting HHV-6 & 7 research are available through the HHV-6 Foundation Repository

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About the Foundation

The HHV-6 Foundation in a non-profit entity founded to encourage scientific exchange between investigators and to provide pilot grants for promising scientific and clinical research on the under- appreciated viruses HHV-6A and HHV-6B. The Foundation sponsors international conferences and supports scientists and clinicians seeking to clarify the role of the two HHV-6 viruses in disease. Since the HHV-6A and HHV-6B can smolder in the brain and other organs without circulating in the peripheral blood or plasma, identifying chronic infection is a challenge. Read More

ciHHV-6 Patient Registry

Except for transplant patients, HHV-6 plasma DNA tests are rarely positive. Any patient testing positive should rule out chromosomally integrated HHV-6, a condition that may be associated with increased HHV-6 reactivation.

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