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Anti-cytokine therapy may be the key to reducing CNS damage in HHV-6 encephalitis

Japanese investigators evaluated cytokines and chemokines in the CSF and plasma in HHV-6 encephalitis patients with good and poor prognoses. They found IL-6, IL-7, MCP-1 to be elevated one week before onset, suggesting that these cytokines may be effective targets for intervention. In patients with poor prognoses, concentrations of IL-6 and IL-8 were higher at the onset of encephalitis and concentrations of IL-6, IL-7, and MCP-1 were higher one week before onset. While HHV-6 DNA were higher in the CSF were significantly higher in the poor prognosis group, there was no correlation between good and poor prognosis and viral load in the blood. Patients were placed in the good prognosis group if they did not die from HHV-6 encephalitis and …

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New study details devastating impact of HHV-6 encephalitis

Investigators in Japan studied 145 patients who developed HHV-6 encephalitis. At 100 days after transplantation, the overall survival rate was just 58.3%, compared with 80.5% for patients who did not develop encephalitis. High-dose antiviral therapy was shown to mitigate high mortality rates in these patients.

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Latent HHV-6A may impair myelin repair in multiple sclerosis

A group at University of Rochester demonstrated that the HHV-6A latency gene, U94, inhibits migration of cells involved in myelin repair. Inefficient myelin repair is associated with progression MS, and the ability of HHV-6A to impede this process suggests that it could be involved in the progression of MS, and raises questions about the virus’s role in other chronic demyelinating diseases.

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Decreased HHV-6 IgG in Alzheimer’s

Investigators from Uppsala University in Sweden found that HHV-6 IgG reactivity was significantly lower in Alzheimer’s Disease patients compared to controls. The authors suggest reduced immunity may be one reason why past studies have found increased levels of HHV-6 DNA in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients compared to controls.