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Prospective Study of Human Herpes Virus 8 (HHV-8) Oral Shedding, Viremia and Serological status among HIV Seropositive and Seronegative Individuals in Sao Paulo, Brazil


Background: Kaposi s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV), also known as human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8), is a gamma-herpesvirus and etiological agent of all forms of Kaposi sarcoma (KS). Saliva may play an important role in HHV-8 transmission in specific populations. Little is known about HHV-8 oral shedding pattern and the possible correlation with the HHV-8 serological profile and viremia. Methods: We conducted a prospective study of HHV-8 salivary excretion among HIV-seronegative (n=47) and HIV-seropositive (n=44) homosexual men and HIV-seropositive women (n=32) over a 6-month period with monthly HHV-8 serologies (immunofluorescence assays (IFA) to identify antibodies to latent and lytic HHV-8 viral proteins, and a whole-virus HHV-8 ELISA) monthly HHV-8 DNA serum/plasma detection and daily self-collected oral rinses for HHV8-DNA detection using real-time PCR.Results: HHV-8 seropositivity was 51.1%, 63.6%, and 37.5%, in the three studied groups. There was no case of HHV-8 DNA detection in serum/plasma. Intermittent detection of oral HHV-8 DNA was observed during 5.1% (110/2160) visits among 18/64 (28%) HHV-8 seropositive individuals, all of whom were males and HHV-8 ELISA seropositive.Conclusion: In immunologically-controlled populations of Brazil, HHV-8 oral shedding was limited to HHV-8 seropositive men, occurred infrequently and intermittently and was not linked to HHV-8 viremia, suggesting a limited potential for oral or blood transmission. (AU)

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