1887

Abstract

Introduction:

The human bocavirus (HBoV) is a parvovirus and is associated with mild to life-threatening acute or persisting respiratory infections, frequently accompanied by further pathogens. So far, there is limited knowledge on the mechanisms of persistence, and no reports on chronic infections or latency have been published so far.

Case presentation:

An immunocompetent male patient suffers from a chronic HBoV1 infection, i.e. viral DNA was detected in both serum and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) for >5 months without co-infections and with respiratory symptoms resolved spontaneously while receiving symptomatic treatment with montelukast and corticosteroids. Following the symptomatic medication of a chronic infection with HBoV1 viraemia indicating active viral replication lasting over 5 months, the patient cleared the viraemia and no further viral DNA was detectable in the BAL. However, by fluorescence hybridization analyses of mucosal biopsies, it was shown that the virus genome still persisted in the absence of viral shedding but in a more compact manner possibly representing a supercoiled episomal form of this otherwise linear single-stranded DNA genome. This indicated the entry into a latency phase. Moreover, the cytokine profile and the IP-10/TARC ratio, a marker for fibrotization, seem to have been altered by HBoV1 replication. Although specific IgG antibodies were detectable during the whole observation period, they showed an apparently insufficient neutralising activity.

Conclusion:

On the one hand, these findings suggest that the symptomatic medication may have led to clearance of the virus from blood and airways and, moreover, that the viral DNA persists in the tissue as an altered episomal form favoured by lacking neutralising antibodies. This appears to be important in order to reduce possible long-term effects such as lung fibrosis.

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2016-07-11
2019-12-08
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