Determinants of neurological syndromes caused by varicella zoster virus (VZV)

Kennedy, P. G.E. and Mogensen, T. H. (2020) Determinants of neurological syndromes caused by varicella zoster virus (VZV). Journal of Neurovirology, 26, pp. 482-495. (doi: 10.1007/s13365-020-00857-w) (PMID:32495195) (PMCID:PMC7438298)

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Abstract

Varicella zoster virus (VZV) is a pathogenic human herpes virus which causes varicella as a primary infection, following which it becomes latent in peripheral autonomic, sensory, and cranial nerve ganglionic neurons from where it may reactivate after decades to cause herpes zoster. VZV reactivation may also cause a wide spectrum of neurological syndromes, in particular, acute encephalitis and vasculopathy. While there is potentially a large number of coding viral mutations that might predispose certain individuals to VZV infections, in practice, a variety of host factors are the main determinants of VZV infection, both disseminated and specifically affecting the nervous system. Host factors include increasing age with diminished cell-mediated immunity to VZV, several primary immunodeficiency syndromes, secondary immunodeficiency syndromes, and drug-induced immunosuppression. In some cases, the molecular immunological basis underlying the increased risk of VZV infections has been defined, in particular, the role of POL III mutations, but in other cases, the mechanisms have yet to be determined. The role of immunization in immunosuppressed individuals as well as its possible efficacy in preventing both generalized and CNS-specific infections will require further investigation to clarify in such patients.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kennedy, Professor Peter
Authors: Kennedy, P. G.E., and Mogensen, T. H.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:Journal of Neurovirology
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1355-0284
ISSN (Online):1538-2443
Published Online:03 June 2020
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 The Authors
First Published:First published in Journal of Neurovirology 26:482–495
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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