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Oropharyngeal group A streptococcal colonization disrupts latent epstein-barr virus infection


Ueda, Seigo; Uchiyama, Satoshi; Azzi, Tarik; Gysin, Claudine; Berger, Christoph; Bernasconi, Michele; Harabuchi, Yasuaki; Zinkernagel, Annelies S; Nadal, David (2014). Oropharyngeal group A streptococcal colonization disrupts latent epstein-barr virus infection. Journal of Infectious Diseases, 209(2):255-264.

Abstract

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infects >90% of the human population within the first 2 decades of life and establishes reversible latent infection in B cells. The stimuli that lead to switching from latent to lytic EBV infection in vivo are still elusive. Group A streptococci (GAS) are a common cause of bacterial pharyngotonsillitis in children and adolescents and colonize the tonsils and pharynx of up to 20% of healthy children. Thus, concomitant presence of EBV and GAS in the same individual is frequent. Here, we show that EBV carriers who are colonized with GAS shed EBV particles in higher numbers in their saliva, compared with EBV carriers not colonized with GAS. Messenger RNA levels of the master lytic regulatory EBV gene BZLF1 were more frequently detected in tonsils from EBV carriers colonized with GAS than from EBV carriers not colonized. Heat-killed GAS, potentially mimicking GAS colonization, elicited lytic EBV in latently infected lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) partially via Toll-like receptor 2 triggering, as did purified GAS peptidoglycan. Thus, colonization by GAS might benefit EBV by increasing the EBV load in saliva and thereby enhancing the likelihood of EBV spread to other hosts.

Abstract

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infects >90% of the human population within the first 2 decades of life and establishes reversible latent infection in B cells. The stimuli that lead to switching from latent to lytic EBV infection in vivo are still elusive. Group A streptococci (GAS) are a common cause of bacterial pharyngotonsillitis in children and adolescents and colonize the tonsils and pharynx of up to 20% of healthy children. Thus, concomitant presence of EBV and GAS in the same individual is frequent. Here, we show that EBV carriers who are colonized with GAS shed EBV particles in higher numbers in their saliva, compared with EBV carriers not colonized with GAS. Messenger RNA levels of the master lytic regulatory EBV gene BZLF1 were more frequently detected in tonsils from EBV carriers colonized with GAS than from EBV carriers not colonized. Heat-killed GAS, potentially mimicking GAS colonization, elicited lytic EBV in latently infected lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) partially via Toll-like receptor 2 triggering, as did purified GAS peptidoglycan. Thus, colonization by GAS might benefit EBV by increasing the EBV load in saliva and thereby enhancing the likelihood of EBV spread to other hosts.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Medical Clinic
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Otorhinolaryngology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Infectious Diseases
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2014
Deposited On:06 Nov 2013 13:30
Last Modified:07 Dec 2017 23:30
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0022-1899
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1093/infdis/jit428
PubMed ID:23935199

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