Latent acyclovir-resistant herpes simplex virus type 1 in trigeminal ganglia of immunocompetent individuals

Monique van Velzen, Freek B van Loenen, Roland J W Meesters, Miranda de Graaf, Lies Remeijer, Theo M Luider, Albert D M E Osterhaus, Georges M G M Verjans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Specific mutations within the hypervariable herpes simplex virus (HSV) gene thymidine kinase (TK) gene lead to acyclovir (ACV) resistance. To uncover the existence of latent ACV-resistant (ACV(R)) HSV-1, we determined the genetic and functional variability of the HSV-1 TK gene pool in paired trigeminal ganglia (TG) of 5 immunocompetent individuals. The latent virus pool consisted of a donor-specific HSV-1 quasispecies, including one major ACV-sensitive (ACV(S)) and multiple phylogenetic-related minor ACV(S) and ACV(R) TK variants. Contrary to minor variants, major TK variants were shared between paired TG. The data demonstrate the coexistence of phylogenetic-related ACV(S) and ACV(R) latent HSV-1 in human TG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1539-43
Number of pages5
JournalThe Journal of infectious diseases
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2012


  • Acyclovir/pharmacology
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents/pharmacology
  • Autopsy
  • Base Sequence
  • COS Cells
  • Chlorocebus aethiops
  • DNA, Viral/genetics
  • Drug Resistance, Viral/genetics
  • Female
  • Herpes Simplex/drug therapy
  • Herpesvirus 1, Human/drug effects
  • Humans
  • Immunocompetence
  • Male
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Phylogeny
  • Prevalence
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Thymidine Kinase/chemistry
  • Trigeminal Ganglion/virology
  • Virus Latency


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