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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Characterization of JC virus DNA amplified from urine of chronic progressive multiple sclerosis patients.

Thirty-seven chronic progressive multiple sclerosis ( MS) patients, 20 of whom were taking cyclosporine, were examined for excretion of JC virus (JCV) in the urine. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of DNA in urinary cell extracts detected JCV in 30% of the MS urines. In the cyclosporine treated group four of 20 (20%) excreted JCV, whereas in the untreated group seven of 17 (41%) excreted JCV. Thus, cyclosporine treatment did not enhance urinary excretion of the virus. A control group consisting of an unselected series of 89 patients donating urine in a general medical clinic and 16 healthy volunteers showed 41% with detectable urinary JCV. Thirty-three percent of the control females excreted JCV (18/54), as did 49% of the control males (25/51). Although the percentage of MS patients excreting detectable virus was not increased compared to the control group, the presence of JCV in the urine provides a convenient source of the virus for further characterization. Genotyping of DNA fragments amplified from the VP1 region indicates mainly the presence of JCV Type 1 in these chronic progressive MS patients. This is also the type that predominates in the control group. An apparent recombinant between Type 1 and Type 3 (African) within the VP1 region, tentatively designated Type 1/3 (or Type 4), was found in both the MS group and the controls. A larger series of MS patients that includes relapsing/remitting disease will be required to determine whether the genotype profile of JCV excreted in the urine of MS patients differs significantly from controls.[1]


  1. Characterization of JC virus DNA amplified from urine of chronic progressive multiple sclerosis patients. Stoner, G.L., Agostini, H.T., Ryschkewitsch, C.F., Baumhefner, R.W., Tourtellotte, W.W. Mult. Scler. (1996) [Pubmed]
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