hosted by
Jonas Blomberg
Section of Virology, dpt of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University
Academic Hospital,
751 85 Uppsala, Sweden
I am an MD (1978) PhD (1977), graduating at the University of Göteborg.
I worked with Lipids at the dpt of Medical Biochemistry 1965-1972
as a Clinical Virologist i Göteborg 1972-1979
as a postDoc at John Stephensons Lab at NCI Frederick on retroviruses 1979-1981
then as a Clinical Virologist i Lund 1981-1995
then as a professor of Clinical Virology in Uppsala 1996-
My fields of interest are:
Retrovirology, Bioinformatics, Clinical Virology and broadly targeted and multiplex methods for detection of microbial nucleic acid. I am also into evolution and Infection biology.

Journal articles

S Escutenaire, N Mohamed, M Isaksson, P Thoren, B Klingeborn, S Belak, M Berg, J Blomberg (2007)  SYBR Green real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction assay for the generic detection of coronaviruses   Arch Virol 152: 1. 41-58  
Abstract: Coronaviruses are etiologic agents of respiratory and enteric diseases in humans and in animals. In this study, a one-step real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay based on SYBR Green chemistry and degenerate primers was developed for the generic detection of coronaviruses. The primers, designed in the open reading frame 1b, enabled the detection of 32 animal coronaviruses including strains of canine coronavirus, feline coronavirus, transmissible gastroenteritis virus (TGEV), bovine coronavirus (BCoV), murine hepatitis virus (MHV) and infectious bronchitis virus (IBV). A specific amplification was also observed with the human coronaviruses (HCoV) HCoV-NL63, HCoV-OC43, HCoV-229E and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). The real-time RT-PCR detected down to 10 cRNA copies from TGEV, BCoV, SARS-CoV and IBV. In addition, the assay exhibited a high sensitivity and specificity on clinical samples from different animal species. The developed assay represents a potential tool for laboratory diagnostics and for detecting still uncharacterized coronaviruses.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Austria
P Frisk, P Ola Darnerud, G Friman, J Blomberg, N G Ilback (2007)  Sequential trace element changes in serum and blood during a common viral infection in mice   J Trace Elem Med Biol 21: 1. 29-36  
Abstract: When trace elements are used as diagnostic tools during disease, it is important to know whether the balance is changed in free or bound elements. Although acute infections are associated with changed trace element balance in serum/plasma, it is not known whether changes occur concomitantly in serum and blood. In the present study the human coxsackievirus B3 (CB3), here adapted to Balb/c mice, was used to study whether infection alters the normal physiological trace element balance in blood and serum. Virus was quantitatively measured in two target organs (pancreas and liver) of this infection by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), showing high concentrations of virus proving ongoing infection. Concentrations of 14 elements were measured in whole blood and serum using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) on days 3, 6 and 9 of the infection. Free and total thyroxine were measured in serum to prove metabolic changes associated with the infection. The thyroxine decreased, while iron and the Cu/Zn ratio in serum increased as a response to the infection. No clear changes in these elements were observed in blood. Cd and Hg tended to decrease in serum but to increase in blood, indicating accumulation in blood cells. Moreover, Al showed a similar decreasing trend in both serum and blood. A correlation between serum and blood levels was observed at different time points of the disease for 9 of the elements. However, As was the only element indicating correlations between serum and blood during the entire course of the disease.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Germany xD;organ of the Society for Minerals and Trace Elements (GMS)
A Elfaitouri, A K Berg, G Frisk, H Yin, T Tuvemo, J Blomberg (2007)  Recent enterovirus infection in type 1 diabetes : evidence with a novel IgM method   J Med Virol 79: 12. 1861-7  
Abstract: Enterovirus (EV) infection has been associated with Type 1 (T1D) diabetes and on a few occasions virus could be isolated at onset of the disease. Using two such isolates as antigens in a quantitative PCR enhanced immunoassay (T1D-EV-QPIA) we have measured IgM antibodies against such potentially diabetogenic viruses in serum from 33 newly diagnosed T1D children, 24 siblings, and 27 healthy children. Sera were also analysed with regard to autoantibodies against GAD65, the cytokine TNF-alpha and the chemokine IP-10. EV-RNA detection was performed on peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). IgM antibodies against this "new" EV antigen were more frequent in serum from T1D children than in serum from siblings and/or controls (P < 0.001). EV-RNA was detected more frequently in PBMC from T1D children than in healthy control children (P < 0.001) and also compared to the siblings (P < 0.003). The cytokine TNF-alpha was less frequently detected in serum from the T1D children compared with serum from siblings and/controls (P < 0.001). A positive correlation was found between the results obtained with the T1D-EV-QPIA and the EV-PCR (P < 0.001). These findings are in line with earlier findings of an increased frequency of enteroviral infections in newly diagnosed T1D patients. In addition, we found that T1D children at onset of the disease had lower frequencies of the chemokine TNF-alpha in their serum than age- and sex-matched controls had, suggesting an impaired immune response.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
A Bindra, S Muradrasoli, R Kisekka, H Nordgren, F Warnberg, J Blomberg (2007)  Search for DNA of exogenous mouse mammary tumor virus-related virus in human breast cancer samples   J Gen Virol 88: Pt 6. 1806-9  
Abstract: Earlier reports of a human exogenous retrovirus (HMTV) related closely to mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV) led us to search for these viral sequences in breast cancer tissues and normal tissues. A real-time PCR was developed based on MMTV and published HMTV envelope sequences. The real-time PCR method can detect one to ten copies of MMTV target DNA. Tissue samples were collected prospectively from 18 breast cancer patients and 11 non-malignant control cases, as well as peripheral blood leukocytes from the same women. Despite the high sensitivity of the real-time PCR method used, none of the samples were positive for HMTV DNA or RNA. The absence of HMTV DNA in both breast cancer samples and controls indicates either that the concentration of putative HMTV DNA in the breast cancers was too low for detection or that it did not exist there.
Notes: Journal Article xD;England
P Frisk, J Tallkvist, I L Gadhasson, J Blomberg, G Friman, N G Ilback (2007)  Coxsackievirus B3 infection affects metal-binding/transporting proteins and trace elements in the pancreas in mice   Pancreas 35: 3. e37-44  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: The trigger of juvenile diabetes has been suggested to be an interaction between a virus and trace elements, where enteroviruses, including coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3), have been discussed as potential initiators. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects in the pancreas on gene expressions of metallothionein 1 (MT1), divalent metal transporter 1 (DMT1), and zinc transporter 5 (ZnT-5) and concomitant changes in iron (Fe), copper (Cu), and zinc (Zn) in serum and pancreas of Balb/c mice on days 3, 6, and 9 of CVB3 infection. METHODS: Trace elements were measured through inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry, and CVB3, MT1, DMT1, and ZnT-5 were measured by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS: Virus was found in the pancreas on all days, with a peak on day 3. Infection tended to increase Fe in both serum and the pancreas. The Cu/Zn ratio in the pancreas increased early in the infection because of a great decrease in Zn. In serum, the Cu/Zn ratio was not increased until day 9 of the disease. In the pancreas, MT1 decreased, whereas DMT1 tended to increase on day 6, and ZnT-5 increased progressively during the course of the disease. CONCLUSIONS: Virus-induced changes in trace elements, MT1, DMT1, and ZnT-5 in the pancreas may reflect early stages of the development of pancreatitis and prestages of diabetic disease.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
G M Abdeldaim, K Stralin, P Olcen, J Blomberg, B Herrmann (2007)  Toward a quantitative DNA-based definition of pneumococcal pneumonia : a comparison of Streptococcus pneumoniae target genes, with special reference to the Spn9802 fragment   Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis  
Abstract: The current shift from phenotypically toward genotypically based microbial diagnosis is not unproblematic. A novel quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay based on the Spn9802 DNA fragment was therefore developed for detection of Streptococcus pneumoniae. Out of 44 bacterial species, only S. pneumoniae and Streptococcus pseudopneumoniae were positive in Spn9802 PCR. In an evaluation on nasopharyngeal aspirates from 166 patients with community-acquired pneumonia, the assay was positive in 49 of 50 culture-positive cases. Of 19 culture-negative but Spn9802 PCR-positive cases, 12 were confirmed as S. pneumoniae by rnpB sequence analysis. With an expanded reference standard, including culture and rnpB sequencing, Spn9802 had a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 98%. A cutoff for clinically significant positivity was 10(4) DNA copies/mL, giving 71% sensitivity and 100% specificity. In conclusion, Spn9802 real-time PCR is highly sensitive and specific. The quantification it provides enables differentiation between pneumococcal pathogenicity and commensalism.
Notes: Journal article
G O Sperber, T Airola, P Jern, J Blomberg (2007)  Automated recognition of retroviral sequences in genomic data--RetroTector   Nucleic Acids Res 35: 15. 4964-76  
Abstract: Eukaryotic genomes contain many endogenous retroviral sequences (ERVs). ERVs are often severely mutated, therefore difficult to detect. A platform independent (Java) program package, RetroTector (ReTe), was constructed. It has three basic modules: (i) detection of candidate long terminal repeats (LTRs), (ii) detection of chains of conserved retroviral motifs fulfilling distance constraints and (iii) attempted reconstruction of original retroviral protein sequences, combining alignment, codon statistics and properties of protein ends. Other features are prediction of additional open reading frames, automated database collection, graphical presentation and automatic classification. ReTe favors elements >1000-bp long due to its dependence on order of and distances between retroviral fragments. It detects single or low-copy-number elements. ReTe assigned a 'retroviral' score of 890-2827 to 10 exogenous retroviruses from seven genera, and accurately predicted their genes. In a simulated model, ReTe was robust against mutational decay. The human genome was analyzed in 1-2 days on a LINUX cluster. Retroviral sequences were detected in divergent vertebrate genomes. Most ReTe detected chains were coincident with Repeatmasker output and the HERVd database. ReTe did not report most of the evolutionary old HERV-L related and MalR sequences, and is not yet tailored for single LTR detection. Nevertheless, ReTe rationally detects and annotates many retroviral sequences.
Notes: Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
P Gyarmati, N Mohammed, H Norder, J Blomberg, S Belak, F Widen (2007)  Universal detection of hepatitis E virus by two real-time PCR assays : TaqMan and Primer-Probe Energy Transfer   J Virol Methods 146: 1-2. 226-35  
Abstract: Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is a major cause of food- and waterborne diseases in countries with poor sanitation. Furthermore, travellers to such countries are also at risk of contracting the virus. Noteworthily, during the last decade an increasing number of non-travel-related cases were recorded even in countries with high sanitary standards. An alternative, direct route of infection, from animals to humans (zoonotic transmission) is suspected to be the cause of recent cases of hepatitis E. In order to provide rapid and sensitive methods for detecting the virus in various hosts, two real-time PCR methods were developed and compared: a TaqMan and Primer-Probe Energy Transfer (PriProET) assay. These highly sensitive novel methods provide valuable diagnostic tools to investigate zoonotic transmission, to detect the virus in the food chain and in research related to the potential of hepatitis E virus to cross the species barrier. The results show that the two novel PCR assays are robust, highly sensitive and specific for broad range detection of the four genotypes of HEV. Compared to PriProET, the TaqMan assay appears to perform slightly better, with higher fluorescence values for positive samples. However, the PriProET has the benefit of better tolerating the point mutations in the target nucleic acids. Thus, it provides a more powerful tool to detect new virus variants. These new molecular diagnostic assays are practical tools that can be employed in the area of public health, for disease diagnosis and for tracking outbreaks. In basic research the methods provide new tools to study HEV biology, including virus-host interactions and transmission between various host species.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
M Oja, J Peltonen, J Blomberg, S Kaski (2007)  Methods for estimating human endogenous retrovirus activities from EST databases   BMC Bioinformatics 8 Suppl 2:  
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) are surviving traces of ancient retrovirus infections and now reside within the human DNA. Recently HERV expression has been detected in both normal tissues and diseased patients. However, the activities (expression levels) of individual HERV sequences are mostly unknown. RESULTS: We introduce a generative mixture model, based on Hidden Markov Models, for estimating the activities of the individual HERV sequences from EST (expressed sequence tag) databases. We use the model to estimate the relative activities of 181 HERVs. We also empirically justify a faster heuristic method for HERV activity estimation and use it to estimate the activities of 2450 HERVs. The majority of the HERV activities were previously unknown. CONCLUSION: (i) Our methods estimate activity accurately based on experiments on simulated data. (ii) Our estimate on real data shows that 7% of the HERVs are active. The active ones are spread unevenly into HERV groups and relatively uniformly in terms of estimated age. HERVs with the retroviral env gene are more often active than HERVs without env. Few of the active HERVs have open reading frames for retroviral proteins.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
M Lundgren, P O Darnerud, Y Molin, H Lilienthal, J Blomberg, N G Ilback (2007)  Coxsackievirus B3 infection and PBDE exposure causes organ-specific effects on CYP-gene expression in the mouse   Toxicology 242: 1-3. 91-9  
Abstract: Common viral infections have been shown to change the tissue distribution of xenobiotics, including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). In previous studies, it has been shown that CYP2B gene expression is induced after PBDE exposure whereas coxsackievirus B3 (CBV3) infection suppresses the expression of CYP-gene expression in the liver. In the present study, CVB3 adapted to Balb/c mice was used to study the combined effects of infection and exposure to pure BDE-99 or the commercial mixture Bromkal on CYP1A1 and CYP2B expression in the lungs and pancreas on day 3 of the infection. The quantitative gene expression of virus, CYP1A1 and CYP2B was measured by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). PBDE exposure in the non-infected mice tended to increase CYP2B expression in the lungs but not in the pancreas. Infection in both non-exposed and PBDE-exposed mice increased CYP2B expression in the lungs but was non-detectable in the pancreas. In the non-infected mice PBDE exposure left the CYP1A1 expression unaltered in both the lungs and pancreas. Infection in both non-exposed and PBDE-exposed mice tended to decrease the gene expression of CYP1A1 in the lungs but to induce it in the pancreas. A correlation between the amount of virus and the gene expression of CYP2B was found in the lungs. However, no effects of PBDE on virus replication were observed in any organ. In conclusion, viral infection affects CYP-gene expression differently in the pancreas and lungs whereas PBDE-induced effects were not obvious. The organ-specific change in gene expression could explain a changed tissue distribution of xenobiotics during infection.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Ireland
N G Ilback, P Frisk, N Mohamed, I L Gadhasson, J Blomberg, G Friman (2007)  Virus induces metal-binding proteins and changed trace element balance in the brain during the course of a common human infection (coxsackievirus B3) in mice   Sci Total Environ 381: 1-3. 88-98  
Abstract: Autopsy of the brain has shown a change in trace element balance in some virus-infected individuals, but it is not known whether this event was a result of the infection. In the present study coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3) adapted to Balb/c mice was used to study whether infection induces gene expression of the metal-binding/transporting proteins metallothionein (MT1 and MT3) and divalent-metal transporter 1 (DMT1) and whether it changes the balance of trace elements in the brain. Virus and MT1, MT3, and DMT1 were quantitatively measured by RT-PCR on days 3, 6 and 9 of the infection. Trace elements (13) were measured in serum and the brain by ICP-MS. High numbers of virus were found in the brain on days 3 and 6, but virus counts were decreased and present only in 50% of the mice on day 9. Gene expression of MT1 tended to increase on all days, whereas that of MT3 only showed a minor and not significant increase on day 3. No clear effect was observed in the expression of DMT1. The increase of MT3 was correlated to the brain concentration of Cu. The Cu/Zn ratio in serum increased as a response to the infection. There was a similar decrease in Cd in serum and the brain. On day 6 of the infection, Hg increased in the brain (p<0.05) and was positively correlated to a concomitant decrease (p<0.05) in serum. Virus numbers in the brain were on day 6 positively correlated (p<0.05) to As concentrations. Enteroviral infections may therefore be an underlying factor regarding the changes in essential as well as potentially toxic trace elements in the brain.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
M Lundgren, P O Darnerud, Y Molin, H Lilienthal, J Blomberg, N G Ilback (2007)  Viral infection and PBDE exposure interact on CYP gene expression and enzyme activities in the mouse liver   Toxicology 242: 1-3. 100-8  
Abstract: In the present study coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3) adapted to Balb/c mice was used to examine whether infection affects xenobiotic-metabolising CYP1A1 and CYP2B gene expression (measured by RT-PCR) and the corresponding enzyme activities of ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) and pentoxyresorufin-O-depentylase (PROD), as observed on day 3 of infection. To study the simultaneous effects of xenobiotic exposure, mice were administered the polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) compounds BDE-99 (single congener) and Bromkal 70-5 DE (commercial mixture). Serum thyroxine levels were also measured. High numbers of CVB3 were found in the livers of infected mice but no significant effects of PBDE on virus replication were observed. In infected mice gene expression and CYP activities were decreased in comparison with non-infected mice, especially for CYP2B. PBDE exposure in the non-infected mice was characterised by an increase in both CYP2B and PROD levels/activities, whereas CYP1A levels increased and EROD activity decreased. In general, PBDE exposure in the infected mice did not increase EROD and PROD activities to the same extent as in the non-infected exposed mice. Infected mice exposed to BDE-99 showed significantly higher CYP2B and PROD levels than both the infected non-exposed and Bromkal-exposed groups. T(4) levels were greatly decreased by infection and a tendency of reduced T(4) levels after PBDE exposure could be observed in non-infected mice. In conclusion, infection reduced the detoxifying capacity of the liver and the serum T(4) levels. PBDE exposure can modify these effects. Notably, in the infected mice differences between BDE-99 and Bromkal were observed on CYP2B gene expression and PROD activity.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Ireland
P Jern, G O Sperber, J Blomberg (2006)  Divergent patterns of recent retroviral integrations in the human and chimpanzee genomes : probable transmissions between other primates and chimpanzees   J Virol 80: 3. 1367-75  
Abstract: The human genome is littered by endogenous retrovirus sequences (HERVs), which constitute up to 8% of the total genomic sequence. The sequencing of the human (Homo sapiens) and chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) genomes has facilitated the evolutionary study of ERVs and related sequences. We screened both the human genome (version hg16) and the chimpanzee genome (version PanTro1) for ERVs and conducted a phylogenetic analysis of recent integrations. We found a number of recent integrations within both genomes. They segregated into four groups. Two larger gammaretrovirus-like groups (PtG1 and PtG2) occurred in chimpanzees but not in humans. The PtG sequences were most similar to two baboon ERVs and a macaque sequence but neither to other chimpanzee ERVs nor to any human gammaretrovirus-like ERVs. The pattern was consistent with cross-species transfer via predation. This appears to be an example of horizontal transfer of retroviruses with occasional fixation in the germ line.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
A Elfaitouri, A L Hammarin, J Blomberg (2006)  Quantitative real-time PCR assay for detection of human polyomavirus infection   J Virol Methods 135: 2. 207-13  
Abstract: The human polyomaviruses BK (BKV) and JC (JCV) affect immunosuppressed patients and are associated with urogenital tract (BKV) and CNS disorders (JCV) and in humans, the pathogenic role of the rhesus monkey virus, Simian virus 40 (SV40), is uncertain. These three viruses have somewhat overlapping tissue pathogenicity and detection of all three polyomaviruses is desirable. A broadly targeted, simple, single tube real-time degenerated quantitative PCR (QPCR) technique for detection of JCV, BKV and SV40 DNA was developed. To avoid false positive results, due to contamination with commonly used SV40 T-antigen plasmids, a conserved region of the VP2 gene was targeted. Down to 1-10 copies of target DNA per PCR reaction were detected. The QPCR was compared with a nested PCR on 41 clinical samples (urine, serum and plasma): 24 (58.5%) tested positive by nested PCR, whereas 31 (75.6%) were positive with QPCR. One CSF sample, from a patient with progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, was negative with the nested PCR but determined as positive by QPCR. Sera from 24 blood donors were negative with QPCR. The QPCR described had a high sensitivity. Its specificity was confirmed sequencing. The QPCR is simple to perform and is valuable for diagnosis of polyomavirus infection.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
L Hu, D Hornung, R Kurek, H Ostman, J Blomberg, A Bergqvist (2006)  Expression of human endogenous gammaretroviral sequences in endometriosis and ovarian cancer   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 22: 6. 551-7  
Abstract: Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) probably originate from ancient germ cell infections by exogenous retroviruses. A high expression of retroviruses in reproductive tissue increases the risk of viral transmission to germ line cells. We therefore investigated the expression of human ERVs (HERVs) in normal endometrium, endometriosis, normal ovaries, and ovarian cancer. Four real-time PCRs (QPCRs) for HERV-E, HERV-I/T, HERV-H, and HERV-W, respectively, and an expression control gene were used. HERV-E RNA expression was significantly higher in endometriotic tissue (average, SD) than in normal endometrium (average, SD), both measured as ratios versus control gene expression and as. HERV-E and HERV-W RNA were higher in normal ovarian tissue than in ovarian cancer. This illustrates that HERV expression is not automatically higher in malignant tissues. The other HERV PCRs did not show expression patterns as distinctive as HERVE and HERV-W in the two kinds of reproductive tissue. A small number of candidate HERV-E loci from which the transcription took place were identified by sequencing of amplimers. The role of HERV-E and HERV-W in endometriosis merits further investigation.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
N Mohamed, S Belak, K O Hedlund, J Blomberg (2006)  Experience from the development of a diagnostic single tube real-time PCR for human caliciviruses, Norovirus genogroups I and II   J Virol Methods 132: 1-2. 69-76  
Abstract: Detection of caliciviruses requires high mutation tolerance and throughput. The development of a rational simple, single tube reverse transcription-real-time quantitative PCR (QPCR) technique for human noroviruses (NV) is reported here. A dual-probe, triple-primer system (NM system) was used for simultaneous detection and preliminary differentiation of NV genogroups in fecal samples. The design was based on a comprehensive analysis of all 1140 NV sequences available in GenBank. A touch-down amplification protocol improved the frequency of detection. The final QPCR was evaluated with 71 fecal samples from outbreak and sporadic cases in Sweden (1997-2004), all calicivirus-positive by electron microscopy. Up to 56 (79 %) were positive. The method is more rational than NV detection methods described previously, and should be a developmental basis for large-scale routine methods for detection of NV.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
S Muradrasoli, A Forsman, L Hu, V Blikstad, J Blomberg (2006)  Development of real-time PCRs for detection and quantitation of human MMTV-like (HML) sequences HML expression in human tissues   J Virol Methods 136: 1-2. 83-92  
Abstract: The human genome contains around 1000 betaretrovirus-like copies, human mouse mammary tumour virus (MMTV)-like (HML) groups 1-10, also referred to as human endogenous retrovirus "HERV-K". Despite many efforts, it is not established whether betaretroviruses, exo- or endogenous, are involved in the etiology of breast cancer, or other cancer diseases, in humans. Quantitative real-time PCR (QPCR) TaqMan-based assays for HML groups 1-7, targeting the conserved reverse transcriptase (RT) and integrase (IN) domains of the pol gene were designed. Plasmids containing the entire pol gene of HML1-7 were used as standards. The RT and IN based QPCRs could detect 10(0)-10(3) copies per PCR reaction of the plasmids. However, not all plasmids gave a signal in both RT and IN QPCRs, probably due to mismatches. Furthermore, RT and IN based HML6 specific QPCRs were developed. They were specific for amplification of transcripts for the whole HML6 group. The methods allow the monitoring in body fluids and tissues of expression of a wide range of betaretrovirus-like sequences. Betaretrovirus-like RNA was studied in normal human tissues and of HML6 in brains of multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. Brain, adrenal gland and testis had a high betaretrovirus-like expression. Multiple sclerosis plaques contained the same HML6 RNA concentration as control tissue. These assays are expected to enhance studies on involvement of betaretroviruses in physiology and disease.
Notes: Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
A Forsman, Z Yun, L Hu, D Uzhameckis, P Jern, J Blomberg (2005)  Development of broadly targeted human endogenous gammaretroviral pol-based real time PCRs Quantitation of RNA expression in human tissues   J Virol Methods 129: 1. 16-30  
Abstract: Endogenous retroviral sequences (ERVs) are dynamic genomic components with profound influences on gene expression and genomic structure. Their extent of expression is not well known. Several broadly targeted real-time reverse transcription PCR (QPCRs) systems for surveillance of RNA expression of the major groups of human gammaretroviral ERVs were constructed. The highly conserved reverse transcriptase (RT) and integrase (IN) domains of the pol gene were used as targets for the PCRs, which were both probe-based (TaqMan) and probe-less (SYBR Green). Different levels of primer and probe degeneracy, with or without inosine, were tested. Several of the PCRs had sensitivities of a few HERV nucleic acid copies per PCR reaction. Specificities were approximately as expected from the fit of primers and probes. Gammaretroviral HERV RNA expression was studied in different human tissues. Each HERV group had a specific pattern of expression. HERV-E was highly expressed in testis, HERV-I/T in brain and testis, HERV-H in brain and testis, while HERV-W was highly expressed in placenta. Gammaretroviral RNA was not detected in plasma from 50 blood donors in saliva from 20 persons. In conclusion, a set of tools for investigation of gammaretroviral HERV RNA expression was created.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
A C Andersson, Z Yun, G O Sperber, E Larsson, J Blomberg (2005)  ERV3 and related sequences in humans : structure and RNA expression   J Virol 79: 14. 9270-84  
Abstract: The ERV3 locus at chromosome 7q11 is a much studied human endogenous retroviral (HERV) sequence, owing to an env open reading frame (ORF) and placental RNA and protein expression. An analysis of the human genome demonstrated that ERV3 is one of a group of 41 highly related elements (ERV3-like HERVs) which use proline, isoleucine, or arginine tRNA in their primer binding sites. In addition to elements closely related to ERV3, the group included the previously known retinoic acid-inducible element, RRHERVI, also referred to as HERV15, but was separate from the related HERV-E elements. The ERV3-like elements are defective. The only element with an ORF among gag, pro, pol, and env genes was the env ORF of the original ERV3 locus. A search in dbEST revealed ERV3 RNA expression in placenta, skin, carcinoid tumor, and adrenal glands. Expression was also studied with newly developed real-time quantitative PCRs (QPCR) of ERV3 and HERV-E(4-1) env sequences. Results from a novel histone 3.3 RNA QPCR result served as the expression control. QPCR results for ERV3 were compatible with previously published results, with a stronger expression in adrenal gland and placenta than in 15 other human tissues. The expression of the envelope (env) of ERV3 at chromosome 7q11 was also studied by using stringent in situ hybridization. Expression was found in corpus luteum, testis, adrenal gland, Hassal's bodies in thymus, brown fat, pituitary gland, and epithelium of the lung. We conclude that ERV3 env is most strongly expressed in adrenal and sebaceous glands as well as in placenta.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
P Jern, G O Sperber, G Ahlsen, J Blomberg (2005)  Sequence variability, gene structure, and expression of full-length human endogenous retrovirus H   J Virol 79: 10. 6325-37  
Abstract: Recently, we identified and classified 926 human endogenous retrovirus H (HERV-H)-like proviruses in the human genome. In this paper, we used the information to, in silico, reconstruct a putative ancestral HERV-H. A calculated consensus sequence was nearly open in all genes. A few manual adjustments resulted in a putative 9-kb HERV-H provirus with open reading frames (ORFs) in gag, pro, pol, and env. Long terminal repeats (LTRs) differed by 1.1%, indicating proximity to an integration event. The gag ORF was extended upstream of the normal myristylation start site. There was a long leader (including a "pre-gag" ORF) region positioned like the N terminus of murine leukemia virus (MLV) "glyco-Gag," potentially encoding a proline- and serine-rich domain remotely similar to MLV pp12. Another ORF, starting inside the 5' LTR, had no obvious similarity to known protein domains. Unlike other hitherto described gammaretroviruses, the reconstructed Gag had two zinc finger motifs. Alternative splicing of sequences related to the HERV-H consensus was confirmed using dbEST data. env transcripts were most prevalent in colon tumors, but also in normal testis. We found no evidence for full length env transcripts in the dbEST. HERV-H had a markedly skewed nucleotide composition, disfavoring guanine and favoring cytidine. We conclude that the HERV-H consensus shared a gene arrangement common to gammaretroviruses with gag separated by stop codon from pro-pol in the same reading frame, while env resides in another reading frame. There was also alternative splicing. HERV-H consensus yielded new insights in gammaretroviral evolution and will be useful as a model in studies on expression and function.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
A Elfaitouri, N Mohamed, J Fohlman, R Aspholm, G Frisk, G Friman, L Magnius, J Blomberg (2005)  Quantitative PCR-enhanced immunoassay for measurement of enteroviral immunoglobulin M antibody and diagnosis of aseptic meningitis   Clin Diagn Lab Immunol 12: 2. 235-41  
Abstract: A PCR-enhanced immunoassay (PIA) to detect enterovirus (EV) immunoglobulin M (IgM) for diagnosis of recent EV infection was recently developed. This test was compared with another EV IgM capture technique, the solid-phase reverse immunosorbent test (SPRIST). Fourteen of 43 serum samples from aseptic meningitis patients were positive by PIA, whereas 10 were positive by SPRIST. One of 39 control serum samples was weakly positive by PIA. A single-serum-dilution real-time PCR-based PIA for EV IgM (quantitative PIA [QPIA]) was also developed and evaluated against PIA, SPRIST, an EV IgM radioimmunoassay (RIA), and clinical data. A mixture of 12 EVs was used as the antigen. Results from investigating four groups of serum samples were as follows. (i) The nine PIA-positive serum samples in group 1 were all positive by QPIA. (ii) Group 2 consisted of 59 serum samples from aseptic meningitis patients. Nineteen of 30 serum samples (63%) taken at hospital admission were positive by QPIA. Of these, 17 were positive in EV PCR. (iii) None of the 30 control serum samples in group 3 were positive by QPIA. (iv) For the 24 serum samples in group 4, of which 11 were positive and 13 were negative by RIA, the QPIA results were completely concordant. The sensitivity and specificity of QPIA for diagnosis of EV infection were 70 and 80%, respectively. QPIA provides a rational strategy for the detection of EV IgM, allows the use of viral antigens with minimal purification, and needs no virus-specific reagents apart from those in the PCR. QPIA is a generally applicable method for the detection of viral IgM in IgM capture assays.
Notes: Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
P Jern, G O Sperber, J Blomberg (2005)  Use of endogenous retroviral sequences (ERVs) and structural markers for retroviral phylogenetic inference and taxonomy   Retrovirology 2:  
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Endogenous retroviral sequences (ERVs) are integral parts of most eukaryotic genomes and vastly outnumber exogenous retroviruses (XRVs). ERVs with a relatively complete structure were retrieved from the genetic archives of humans and chickens, diametrically opposite representatives of vertebrate retroviruses (over 3300 proviruses), and analyzed, using a bioinformatic program, RetroTector, developed by us. This rich source of proviral information, accumulated in a local database, and a collection of XRV sequences from the literature, allowed the reconstruction of a Pol based phylogenetic tree, more extensive than previously possible. The aim was to find traits useful for classification and evolutionary studies of retroviruses. Some of these traits have been used by others, but they are here tested in a wider context than before. RESULTS: In the ERV collection we found sequences similar to the XRV-based genera: alpha-, beta-, gamma-, epsilon- and spumaretroviruses. However, the occurrence of intermediates between them indicated an evolutionary continuum and suggested that taxonomic changes eventually will be necessary. No delta or lentivirus representatives were found among ERVs. Classification based on Pol similarity is congruent with a number of structural traits. Acquisition of dUTPase occurred three times in retroviral evolution. Loss of one or two NC zinc fingers appears to have occurred several times during evolution. Nucleotide biases have been described earlier for lenti-, delta- and betaretroviruses and were here confirmed in a larger context. CONCLUSION: Pol similarities and other structural traits contribute to a better understanding of retroviral phylogeny. "Global" genomic properties useful in phylogenies are i.) translational strategy, ii.) number of Gag NC zinc finger motifs, iii.) presence of Pro N-terminal dUTPase (dUTPasePro), iv.) presence of Pro C-terminal G-patch and v.) presence of a GPY/F motif in the Pol integrase (IN) C-terminal domain. "Local" retroviral genomic properties useful for delineation of lower level taxa are i.) host species range, ii.) nucleotide compositional bias and iii.) LTR lengths.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
M Oja, G O Sperber, J Blomberg, S Kaski (2005)  Self-organizing map-based discovery and visualization of human endogenous retroviral sequence groups   Int J Neural Syst 15: 3. 163-79  
Abstract: About 8 per cent of the human genome consists of human endogenous retroviral sequences (HERVs), which are remains from ancient infections. The HERVs may give rise to transcripts or affect the expression of human genes. The first step in understanding HERV function is to classify HERVs into families. In this work we study the relationships of existing HERV families and detect potentially new HERV families. A Median Self-Organizing Map (SOM), a SOM for non-vectorial data, is used to group and visualize a collection of 3661 HERVs. The SOM-based analysis is complemented with estimates of the reliability of the results. A novel trustworthiness visualization method is used to estimate which parts of the SOM visualization are reliable and which not. The reliability of extracted interesting HERV groups is verified by a bootstrap procedure suitable for SOM visualization-based analysis. The SOM detects a group of epsilonretroviral sequences and a group of ERV9, HERVW, and HUERSP3 sequences which suggests that ERV9 and HERVW sequences may have a common origin.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Singapore
P Schmidt, A Forsman, G Andersson, J Blomberg, O Korsgren (2005)  Pig islet xenotransplantation : activation of porcine endogenous retrovirus in the immediate post-transplantation period   Xenotransplantation 12: 6. 450-6  
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Porcine endogenous retroviruses (PERV) are considered as the main infectious barrier in islet xenotransplantation. PERV has been shown to infect, but not to cause symptomatic disease in mice after islet transplantation. In vivo activation of PERV have so far not been examined. Expression of PERV was examined in adult and fetal porcine islets with or without the presence of known retroviral inducers or after transplantation to rats. METHODS: Isolated adult and fetal porcine islets were cultured under normal conditions or in the presence of dexamethasone or 5-azacytidine and 5-iodo-2-deoxyuridine. PERV mRNA content was analyzed by real-time quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and culture supernatants were analyzed for the presence of retroviral RT. Also, fetal islets were transplanted under the kidney capsule of immunocompetent or nude athymic rats. Expression of PERV mRNA in the grafts was evaluated by real-time quantitative RT-PCR. Infiltration of immunocompetent cells were evaluated by immunohistochemistry. RESULTS: Both fetal and adult islets in culture produced small or even undetectable amounts of PERV mRNA and retroviral RT. PERV expression was not enhanced by retroviral inducers. In contrast, activation of PERV expression was observed the first day after transplantation of fetal islet-like cell clusters in both athymic and normal rats. PERV expression peaked after 1 to 3 days and was then rapidly returned to background levels. PERV expression neither correlated with the innate immune response seen in athymic rats nor with the specific process of rejection in normal rats. CONCLUSION: Both fetal and adult islets produce low amounts of PERV mRNA in culture. After transplantation PERV expression is induced, seemingly independent of both the unspecific inflammatory response and the specific T-cell-mediated rejection process. It is speculated that PERV expression is correlated with the level of hypoxia in the islet xenograft.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Denmark
B Herrmann, V C Larsson, C J Rubin, F Sund, B M Eriksson, J Arvidson, Z Yun, K Bondeson, J Blomberg (2004)  Comparison of a duplex quantitative real-time PCR assay and the COBAS Amplicor CMV Monitor test for detection of cytomegalovirus   J Clin Microbiol 42: 5. 1909-14  
Abstract: A duplex quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) assay was designed to detect both the polymerase gene (pol) and the glycoprotein gene (gB) of cytomegalovirus (CMV). The detection limit of the qPCR was determined to be 1 to 3 copies/reaction and the linear measure interval was 10(3) to 10(8) copies/ml. The qPCR system was compared to the COBAS Amplicor CMV Monitor test (COBAS) by an analysis of 138 plasma samples. Both systems detected CMV in 71 cases and had negative results for 33 samples. In addition, 34 samples were positive by qPCR and negative by the COBAS assay, but in no case was the COBAS result positive and the qPCR result negative. Thus, qPCR detected 48% more positive cases than the COBAS method. For samples with > or = 10(5) copies/ml by qPCR, a saturation effect was seen in the COBAS assay and quantification required dilution. Copy numbers for pol and gB by qPCR generally agreed. However, the reproducibility of qPCR assays and the need for an international standard are discussed. Discrepant copy numbers for pol and gB by qPCR were found for samples from two patients, and sequence analysis revealed that the corresponding CMV strains were mismatched at four nucleotide positions compared with the gB fragment primer sequences. In conclusion, a duplex qPCR assay in a real-time format facilitates quantitative measurements and minimizes the risk of false-negative results.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;United States
P Jern, G O Sperber, J Blomberg (2004)  Definition and variation of human endogenous retrovirus H   Virology 327: 1. 93-110  
Abstract: We defined the abundant human endogenous retrovirus group HERV-H based on pol similarity. Among 3661 pol-containing elements, 1124 integrations were similar to HERV-H RGH2 pol using translated pol sequences. A clustering procedure lessened these to 234 representatives, amenable to detailed study. Among the 1124, 926 clustered into HERV-H and 106 into adjacent HERV-H-like, the remainder being more distant to HERV-H. The HERV-H group was divided into RTVLH2-like (705 elements) and RGH2-like (77 elements) subgroups. Among 926 HERV-H, LTR differences were 1-33%, 10% had env, 78% had gag, 66% had a histidine primer binding site (PBS), and 3% (both subgroups) had a phenylalanine PBS. Allelic differences in env were studied using a convenient temperature gradient gel electrophoresis (TGGE) method and a genomic single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) search. A pattern of abundant defective elements and less abundant less defective ones led us to formulate a "midwife" master model where more complete elements help the others in trans to transpose.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
J Fohlman, J Blomberg, G Froman, L Engstrand, A Johansson, G Friman (2004)  Microbial diagnosis with PCR will become clinically beneficial with a faster analysis   Lakartidningen 101: 17. 1488-92  
Abstract: PCR was introduced in 1985 by Mullis and was immediately recognized as a valuable tool in biomedical research and was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1993. Two culture-negative meningitis cases are described where Haemophilus influenzae and Neisseria meningitidis were found by 16SRNA-PCR. The modern real time PCR technology using fluorescent probes (hybridization probes, lightup probes, molecular beacons etc) for detection of the PCR-product or on DNA microarray chips, is under development for routine use. Multiplex technology can be used to simultaneously detect multiple microorganisms as well as resistance genes. Using super-convection with ultracentrifugation high-speed PCR, results can be obtained in 10 minutes and the amplificate can also be analyzed by DNA-sequencing to achieve species identification as well as detection of resistance gene mutations. The technique has mainly been applied to viruses, but is now slowly adapted to bacteria, fungi, protozoa and helminths. PCR is especially well suited for slow growing bacteria like Mycobacteria, fastidious organisms like Bartonella and contagious agents like tularemia, but also for malaria and fungi, where the advantages in sensitivity and speed can be exploited. The limit for application to routine analysis will depend on the development of simple and fast procedures for nucleic acid extraction, as well as interpretation of the PCR analysis per se, since highly efficient thermocyclers now are on the markets.
Notes: Case Reports xD;English Abstract xD;Journal Article xD;Sweden
F Filen, A Strand, A Allard, J Blomberg, B Herrmann (2004)  Duplex real-time polymerase chain reaction assay for detection and quantification of herpes simplex virus type 1 and herpes simplex virus type 2 in genital and cutaneous lesions   Sex Transm Dis 31: 6. 331-6  
Abstract: BACKGROUND: A sensitive and specific method for detecting herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) is important for diagnosing genital and cutaneous infections. GOAL: The goal of this study was to compare quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) with virus culture for diagnosis of genital and cutaneous HSV-1 and HSV-2. STUDY DESIGN: A duplex qPCR system for quantification of DNA from HSV-1 and HSV-2 was developed. Duplicate swabs for PCR and virus culture were collected from 89 patients attending our sexually transmitted infection and dermatology clinic. RESULTS: The duplex qPCR had a linear measure interval of 10-10 copies/mL. The detection limit was between 1 and 5 copies per reaction. qPCR detected HSV in 57 (64%) specimens and virus was isolated in 45 (50%) cases. First-episode infections showed higher viral quantities with a median value of 4.2 x 10 copies per reaction compared with recurrent infections with 1.0 x 10 (P = 0.0002). HSV-1 was more likely to be the cause of first-episode genital infections (72%), and HSV-2 of recurrent and atypical genital manifestations (73%). CONCLUSION: Real-time PCR is a sensitive method for diagnosing genital herpes, and the duplex format is convenient for typing. The method increased the detection rate by 27% compared with virus culture.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
N Mohamed, A Elfaitouri, J Fohlman, G Friman, J Blomberg (2004)  A sensitive and quantitative single-tube real-time reverse transcriptase-PCR for detection of enteroviral RNA   J Clin Virol 30: 2. 150-6  
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Enteroviruses (EVs) are significant human pathogens. Rapid and sensitive diagnostic techniques are desirable. OBJECTIVES: To develop a quantitative single-tube real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) for human enterovirus ribonucleic acid (RNA) (QPCR), with protection against amplimer contamination. STUDY DESIGN: The method was evaluated with serial dilutions of EV, 62 cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) specimens from meningitis patients, and the third and fourth European Union Concerted Action Enterovirus Proficiency Panels. A commercial EV PCR test was run in parallel. RESULTS: Optimisation included RNA extraction procedure, design and concentrations of primers and probes from the 5' non-coding region as well as recombinant Thermus thermophilus polymerase (rTth), Mn(OAc)(2) and thermolabile UNG concentrations. Of 62 CSF samples from cases of meningitis submitted for QPCR testing, 34 (76%) and 21 (47%) were positive by QPCR and a commercial EV RNA detection kit, respectively. The detection limit of QPCR was 0.001 TCID(50)/ml (50% tissue culture-infective dose per millilitre) for a coxsackievirus B2 preparation and <10 copies of a plasmid containing coxsackievirus B2 complementary deoxyribonucleic acid (cDNA). The relation between threshold cycle (C(t)) and amount of virus was linear (r = 0.99) over a range of 10(-3) to 10(4) TCID(50)/ml of coxsackievirus B2. CONCLUSIONS: The QPCR method allows a large number of samples to be screened rapidly. Its sensitivity, simplicity, and reproducibility make it a suitable tool for the routine laboratory.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands xD;the official publication of the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology
A Forsman, D Ushameckis, A Bindra, Z Yun, J Blomberg (2003)  Uptake of amplifiable fragments of retrotransposon DNA from the human alimentary tract   Mol Genet Genomics 270: 4. 362-8  
Abstract: Few attempts have been made to study the transfer of DNA from ingested food across the intestinal barrier. A low uptake of ingested DNA has been observed in mice, cattle and poultry. There have been no reports on humans so far. Maintenance of species barriers, protection against retrotransposons, optimisation of oral DNA vaccines and the fate of genetically modified foodstuffs are issues where this topic is of importance. We therefore used the high-copy-number rabbit retrotransposon RERV-H, and rabbit mitochondrial DNA, to study the transfer of DNA from ingested rabbit meat into the bloodstream of two human volunteers. A quantitative PCR was used to measure RERV-H levels in food and in the blood. Amplification with the primers selected results in the generation of a 250-bp fragment of RERV-H. Transfer across the intestinal epithelium could be demonstrated in both subjects. Levels of the fragment in the bloodstream peaked at 1-3 h after ingestion of the experimental meal. One hour after a meal of rabbit meat containing 10(14) copies of RERV-H DNA, a maximum concentration of 200 copies of RERV-H DNA per ml of peripheral blood was observed, which corresponds to the uptake of approximately 10(6) RERV-H DNA copies in 1 h. RERV-H DNA was detected in both cellular and plasma compartments. Both rabbit retrotransposon and mitochondrial DNA was taken up from the human alimentary tract. The size of the fragments detected is similar to that of SINE retrotransposons (approximately 300 bp). The fate and functionality of alimentary DNA in humans will require further study.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Germany xD;Mgg
A Forsman, D Uzameckis, L Ronnblom, E Baecklund, A Aleskog, A Bindra, R Pipkorn, S Lejniece, S Kozireva, M Murovska, J Blomberg (2003)  Single-tube nested quantitative PCR : a rational and sensitive technique for detection of retroviral DNA. Application to RERV-H/HRV-5 and confirmation of its rabbit origin   J Virol Methods 111: 1. 1-11  
Abstract: It was reported earlier that a few patients suffering from non-Hodgkin's lymphoma had low amounts of DNA from the so-called fifth human exogenous retrovirus, HRV-5. A sensitive and rational method for large-scale screening for HRV-5 DNA was therefore developed. It is a single-tube nested quantitative PCR (stnQPCR), which uses two functionally isolated primer pairs and one probe target distinct from related endogenous retroviral sequences, yet encompassing known HRV-5 variation, allowing optimal use of sequence conservation. DNA from lymphoma, myeloma, and follicular dendritic cell lines was tested for HRV-5 positivity, as was DNA from whole blood of blood donors, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and systemic lupus erythematosus patients, as well as DNA from lymph node biopsies of rheumatoid arthritis patients with lymphoma. One blood donor, one systemic lupus erythematosus patient, two previously known positive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients, and one rheumatoid arthritis lymphoma patient, came out positive. They had 24, 2, 148, 480 and 30 proviral copies per microg of DNA from PBMC or lymphoma tissue, respectively. During the completion of this work it was reported that HRV-5 is a rabbit endogenous retrovirus (RERV-H), and that HRV-5 positivity was due to presence of rabbit DNA. DNA from six RERV-H/HRV-5 positive samples was therefore retested. Three also contained rabbit mitochondrial DNA. A search for HRV-5 antibodies using synthetic peptides was negative in sera from three RERV-H/HRV-5 positive individuals, as well as in 144 other sera, according with a noninfectious origin of the RERV-H/HRV-5 DNA in human samples. A search for possible sources of rabbit DNA contamination was negative. Methods for prevention of PCR contamination were strictly adhered to. Three samples from RERV-H/HRV-5 positive individuals positive at the Uppsala laboratory were retested at one or two other laboratories, and all three were positive. Two other samples, which were positive in the Riga laboratory, were tested also in London and also found positive. One non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patient was RERV-H/HRV-5 positive in four consecutive samples, showing that positivity was a property of that patient. It is concluded that the stnQPCR developed to detect and quantify minute amounts of RERV-H/HRV-5 DNA is a principle which can be applied widely and HRV-5 is a RERV-H. Its presence in a few human blood samples could not be explained.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
X W Shao, A Malmsten, J Lennerstrand, A Sonnerborg, T Unge, J S Gronowitz, C F Kallander (2003)  Use of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase recovered from human plasma for phenotypic drug susceptibility testing   Aids 17: 10. 1463-71  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To demonstrate the use of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase (RT) recovered directly from plasma for phenotypic drug susceptibility testing. METHODS: Plasma from HIV-1 infected individuals with and without drug resistance-associated mutations were selected for the study. The blind coded plasmas were treated to inactivate cellular enzymes. The virions were immobilized on a gel and washed to remove antiretroviral drugs and RT activity blocking antibodies. The immobilized virions were lysed; the viral RT eluted and quantified, all according to the ExaVir Load procedure. The drug sensitivity profiles of each RT were determined using serially diluted drugs and modified Cavidi HS Lenti RT kits. RESULTS: The phenotypic drug sensitivity profiles of the RT and the patterns of drug resistance mutations were highly concordant. Plasma RT from virions devoid of mutations associated with drug resistance had average 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC(50)) of 1.5 +/- 0.93 microM for nevirapine, 0.21 +/- 0.099 microM for efavirenz, 7.1 +/- 3.2 microM for delavirdine, 0.42 +/- 0.15 microM for azidothymidine triphosphate and 0.059 +/- 0.018 microM for didehydrothymidine triphosphate. The increase in IC(50) value for RT with drug resistance associated substitutions was from 3- to more than 65-fold for non-nucleoside inhibitors and between 2- and 30-fold for thymidine analogue drugs. CONCLUSION: RT derived from virions recovered from the plasma of HIV infected individuals can be used for analysis of phenotypic drug susceptibility. The methods presented provide rapid alternatives for analysing phenotypic drug susceptibility especially when the therapy is based on non-nucleoside RT inhibitors and thymidine-analogue drugs.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
P Jern, M Lindeskog, D Karlsson, J Blomberg (2002)  Full-length HERV-H elements with env SU open reading frames in the human genome   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 18: 9. 671-6  
Abstract: Human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) are estimated to represent at least 1% of the human genome. An HERV-H env SU sequence (HERV-H19) was used to screen the high-throughput (htgs) and nonredundant (nr) databases for other HERV-H SU open reading frames (ORFs) and thus possible functional proteins. Using PCR with primers derived from HERV-H19 SU, we also obtained several new sequences with ORFs from a human DNA sample. In a phylogenetic analysis, ORF-containing sequences clustered with HERV-H sequences from chromosomes 1 and 2. SU ORF- and non-SU ORF-containing elements had about the same difference between 5' and 3' long terminal repeats (LTRs) (about 4%), indicating a similar time of integration. SU ORF sequences had a moderately high number of synonymous-versus-nonsynonymous mutations, which indicates a selection for maintenance of the HERV-H SU ORFs.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United States
X W Shao, S Hjalmarsson, J Lennerstrand, B Svennerholm, J Blomberg, C F Kallander, J S Gronowitz (2002)  Application of a colorimetric chain-termination assay for characterization of reverse transcriptase from 3'-azido-2',3'-deoxythymidine-resistant HIV isolates   Biotechnol Appl Biochem 35: Pt 3. 155-64  
Abstract: Two different enzyme assays, both based on the interaction of native reverse transcriptase (RT) and 3'-azido-2',3'-deoxythymidine triphosphate (AZT-TP), were used to characterize the enzymes from 18 HIV-1 isolates with decreased sensitivity to AZT in cell culture. The first assay, which measures the balance between incorporation and excision of AZT monophosphate in the presence of dNTP substrate (in terms of IC(50)), gave an approx. 9-fold variation in sensitivity to AZT-TP. There was a correlation between the IC(50) values and the sensitivity of the corresponding virus to AZT in cell culture (r=0.60, P<0.01). The second assay, which was designed specifically for measurement of chain termination in the absence of dNTP substrate (as the concentration of AZT-TP giving 50% residual primer function, or CT(50)), revealed a more than 600-fold difference between the different isolate RTs. For the majority of enzymes there was a strict correlation between the results from the two assays; however, four isolates exhibited significantly higher CT(50)/IC(50) ratios than the other isolates. These differences were not related to sensitivity of the corresponding viruses to AZT but to the occurrence of certain mutations in their pol gene. The four deviating isolates contained either a minimum of four AZT-specific substitutions, including Thr-215-->Tyr (isolates 134 and 143), or some of the known specific substitutions combined with Thr-39-->Ala (isolates 80 and 157). The Thr-39-->Ala substitution has previously been recorded in connection with AZT/Foscarnet combination therapy.
Notes: Evaluation Studies xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
T Ericsson, B Oldmixon, J Blomberg, M Rosa, C Patience, G Andersson (2001)  Identification of novel porcine endogenous betaretrovirus sequences in miniature swine   J Virol 75: 6. 2765-70  
Abstract: PCR amplification of genomic DNA from miniature swine peripheral blood lymphocytes, using primers corresponding to highly conserved regions of the polymerase (pol) gene, allowed the identification of two novel porcine endogenous retrovirus (PERV) sequences, PMSN-1 and PMSN-4. Phylogenetic analyses of the nucleotide sequences of PMSN-1 and PMSN-4 revealed them to be most closely related to betaretroviruses. The identification of PERVs belonging to the Betaretrovirus genus shows that endogenous retroviruses of this family are more broadly represented in mammalian species than previously appreciated. Both sequences contained inactivating mutations, implying that these particular loci are defective. However, Southern blot analysis showed additional copies of closely related proviruses in the miniature swine genome. Analyses of fetal and adult miniature swine tissues revealed a broad mRNA expression pattern of both PMSN-1 and PMSN-4. The most abundant expression was detected in whole bone marrow c-kit(+) (CD117(+)) progenitor bone marrow cells, fetal liver, salivary gland, and thymus. It appears unlikely that functional loci encoding these novel PERV sequences exist, but this remains to be established. The betaretrovirus sequences described in this report will allow such investigations to be actively pursued.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United States
S Hjalmarsson, J Blomberg, L Grillner, R Pipkorn, T Allander (2001)  Sequence evolution and cross-reactive antibody responses to hypervariable region 1 in acute hepatitis C virus infection   J Med Virol 64: 2. 117-24  
Abstract: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection may result in acute resolving or chronic infection. Patients that clear the infection have a more vigorous cellular immune response and an early humoral response to the hypervariable region 1 (HVR1) of the E2 envelope protein. To analyse further the properties of the early anti-HVR1 response, cross-reactivity of anti-HVR1 responses was assessed in five patients with acute HCV infection, who were infected by the same virus strain during a nosocomial outbreak. The sequence evolution of HVR1 was examined in sequential serum samples up to 37 months post infection. Peptides were synthesised corresponding to the obtained HVR1 sequences and unrelated HVR1 sequences, and antibody reactivity to the peptides in sequential sera was investigated by ELISA. The results suggest an association between specific gaps in humoral immunity and the HVR1 sequence evolution during early infection. Possible interpretations of this phenomenon include immune escape mechanisms or suppression of specific anti-HVR1 antibodies.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
S Kozireva, S Lejniece, J Blomberg, M Murovska (2001)  Human retrovirus type 5 sequences in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of T cell origin   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 17: 10. 953-6  
Abstract: DNA of a recently described fifth exogenous retrovirus (HRV-5) has been found in blood samples from patients with autoimmune diseases and lymphoma. We analyzed HRV-5 sequence in DNA extracted from whole blood of 17 patients with T cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) and 186 patients with hematological malignancies other than NHL, using a sensitive PCR technique. While all samples of patients with hematological malignancies other than NHL were negative, 2 of the 17 patients with T cell NHL were HRV-5 DNA positive. Both HRV-5-positive patients had T cell NHL of high-grade malignancy (stage IV) and diffuse distribution of the lymphoma, including infiltration of bone marrow or lung and pleura. The difference in HRV-5 DNA detection frequency between NHL and control groups is significant (p value of 0.0004 judged by the Fisher exact test). These data, together with our previous finding of HRV-5 DNA in three B cell NHL cases, are compatible with an association between HRV-5 and NHL, of both T cell and B cell origin.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United States
L Naver, A Ehrnst, E Belfrage, J Blomberg, B Christensson, M Forsgren, G Lidin-Janson, S Lindgren, R Ljung, A Sonnerborg, A B Bohlin (2001)  Broad spectrum of time of detection, primary symptoms and disease progression in infants with HIV-1 infection   Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis 20: 3. 159-66  
Abstract: The relationship between time of HIV-1 detection, appearance of symptoms and disease progression was studied in all 24 HIV-1-infected infants from a cohort of 117 children who were born to HIV-1-infected mothers and monitored from birth. HIV isolation from plasma and mononuclear cells, HIV-1 DNA PCR (polymerase chain reaction) and, retrospectively, a quantitative assay for HIV-1 RNA were used for virus detection. Two infants possibly exhibited a symptomatic primary HIV infection. More children with than without symptoms during the first year of life progressed to immunological class 3 (P=0.013) and to AIDS or death (P=0.003) during follow-up. HIV-1 was detected within 4 days of age in 4 of 16 infants: 3 of them became symptomatic within 1 year, as did 6 of the remaining 12 infants (not statistically significant). All four infants in whom virus was detected within 4 days of age progressed to severe immunosuppression, compared to 6 of 14 in whom the virus detection test was initially negative prior to the first positive result (n.s.). Two children with previous repeatedly negative HIV detection tests were diagnosed with HIV-1 infection at 8 and 9 months, respectively. Repeated blood sampling is needed for the diagnosis of HIV-1 infection in perinatally exposed infants, and virus detection tests for exclusion of HIV-1 infection must be used with caution.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Germany xD;official publication of the European Society of Clinical Microbiology
S Kozireva, G Nemceva, I Danilane, O Pavlova, J Blomberg, M Murovska (2001)  Prevalence of blood-borne viral infections (cytomegalovirus, human herpesvirus-6, human herpesvirus-7, human herpesvirus-8, human T-cell lymphotropic virus-I/II, human retrovirus-5) among blood donors in Latvia   Ann Hematol 80: 11. 669-73  
Abstract: The identification of blood-borne viral infections is important in transfusion medicine. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of human herpesvirus (HHV) [cytomegalovirus (CMV), HHV-6, HHV-7 HHV-8] and human retrovirus (HRV) (human T-cell lymphotropic virus (HTLV)-I/II, HRV-5) infections among apparently healthy Latvian blood donors. DNA extracted from peripheral blood leukocytes (PBL) of 150 individuals was tested for herpesviruses by sensitive polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique. None of the blood donors was positive for HHV-8 infection, while the incidence of latent beta-herpesvirus infections was high: single infection by CMV, HHV-6, and HHV-7 was detected in 2.6%, 8.0%, and 43.3% of blood donors, respectively. Simultaneous dual and triple infections of these viruses were observed in 28.0% and 4.7% of individuals, respectively. Active infection by CMV and HHV-6 was not found, but HHV-7 DNA was present in plasma of 10.6% of the blood donors. While all blood donors were HTLV-II and HRV-5 negative, 4.6% of HTLV-I seronegative blood donors were positive for the HTLV-I tax gene, although none of them harbored sequences for structural genes of the provirus. Based on our results, we conclude that monitoring of beta-herpesvirus infections in blood donors can be important in cases of transfusions to immunocompromised persons. HHV-8, as well as the retroviruses HTLV-II and HRV-5, were not found in blood of Latvian blood donors. More investigations are required to explain the presence of the HTLV-I tax sequence in seronegative blood donors.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Germany
A A Bengtsson, G Sturfelt, L Truedsson, J Blomberg, G Alm, H Vallin, L Ronnblom (2000)  Activation of type I interferon system in systemic lupus erythematosus correlates with disease activity but not with antiretroviral antibodies   Lupus 9: 9. 664-71  
Abstract: The objective was to investigate the relation between serum levels of interferon-alpha (IFN-alpha), the activity of an endogenous IFN-alpha inducing factor (SLE-IIF), clinical and immunological disease activity as well as serum levels of antiretroviral antibodies in SLE. Serum levels of IFN-alpha were measured in serial sera from 30 patients sampled at different stages of disease activity (SLEDAI score). The SLE-IIF activity was measured by its ability to induce IFN-alpha production in cultures of normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Both serum IFN-alpha and SLE-IIF increased markedly at flare in serially followed patients. The SLEDAI score, levels of anti-dsDNA antibodies and IL-10 correlated positively, and complement components Clq, C3 and leukocytes correlated inversely with serum concentrations of IFN-alpha. The extent of multiple organ involvement correlated with serum IFN-alpha. No relation between concentrations of retroviral peptide binding antibodies and IFN-alpha or SLE-IIF activity was found. The close relationship between disease activity in SLE patients and IFN-alpha serum levels suggests that activation of the type 1 IFN system might be of importance in the disease process.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
A Lawoko, B Johansson, J Ljunggren, A Fries, R Fredriksson, L Georgievska, B Malmvall, R Pipkorn, E M Fenyo, J Blomberg (2000)  Structural prerequisites for intersubtype B and D antigenicity of the third variable envelope region (V3) of human immunodeficiency virus type 1   J Infect Dis 182: 1. 49-58  
Abstract: To elucidate the structural requirements for intersubtype antigenicity of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) third variable envelope region (V3), synthetic peptides were used in enzyme immunoassays (EIAs) with serum samples from persons with proven or probable subtype B and D infections. Mathematical analyses of results from EIAs with singly substituted V3 peptides revealed important residues determining overall N-terminal V3 peptide antigenicity. This information was used to design V3 immunogens, rabbit antiserum to which were tested in EIA and for in vitro neutralization of molecular clones of HIV-1(MN) and HIV-1(MAL). Intersubtype-reactive epitopes were distributed toward the N-terminal half of the V3 loop. Lysine at position 310, arginine at position 311, and isoleucine at position 314, all derived from the MN primary sequence, were major determinants of intersubtype V3 antigenicity. Combinations of residues that enhanced antigenicity often contained lysine at position 310. Threonine at position 308 was common in the least advantageous combinations. V3 immunogens modified to achieve optimal antigenicity induced antiserum with augmented cross-neutralization of virus from MAL and MN molecular clones, suggesting one approach to subunit vaccine development.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United states
J Blomberg (2000)  Newly discovered human retroviruses. Association with disease is still undetermined   Lakartidningen 97: 34. 3597-9,  
Abstract: Retroviruses are enveloped RNA viruses which can transcribe RNA to DNA and integrate into the chromosomal DNA of their host cell. Heritable integrations give rise to endogenous retroviral sequences (ERVs). The rest is exogenous, infecting from individual to individual. This survey highlights an emerging scenario in human retrovirology. Humans have thousands of distinct ERVs. Although most are damaged by mutations, many are expressed as RNA, a few also as proteins and viral particles. The latter are not known to be infectious. Obviously, human ancestors encountered many different exogenous retroviruses, some of which may still be extant. In fact, an exogenous retrovirus related to ERVs was recently discovered. It is the fifth human exogenous retrovirus, human retrovirus 5 (HRV-5). It succeeds the two human T-lymphotropic viruses (HTLVs) and the two human immunodeficiency viruses (HIVs). The newly discovered endogenous and exogenous human retroviruses are now being investigated for association with disease. There are indications of selective ERV activation in multiple sclerosis, schizophrenia and seminoma. HRV-5 has been associated with rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. It is not yet known whether these first observations signal a pathogenic role for the newly discovered retroviruses.
Notes: English Abstract xD;Journal Article xD;Review xD;Sweden
M Murovska, S Lejniece, S Kozireva, M Koulikovska, H Yin, J Blomberg (2000)  Human retrovirus 5 sequences in peripheral blood cells of patients with B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma   Int J Cancer 85: 6. 762-70  
Abstract: A recently described sequence from a probable 5th human exogenous retrovirus, HRV-5, is related to type A, B and D retroviruses. It was initially detected in a salivary gland biopsy from a patient with Sjogren's syndrome, but it is not consistently associated with this disease. We searched for the HRV-5 sequence in DNA extracted from whole blood of 300 blood donors, 81 patients with hematological malignancy and 21 patients with neurological disease using PCR. While samples from none of the blood donors and the neurological patients became positive, 3 of the 81 patients with hematological malignancy were HRV-5 DNA positive. All 3 had B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of low grade. The difference in frequency between NHL and controls is statistically significant. HRV-5 DNA was found in DNA from whole blood and in plastic-adherent cells but not in tumor cell DNA. Thus, monocytes/macrophages may be preferred targets for HRV-5. Our result, together with a previous finding of HRV-5 DNA in 2 NHL cases, is compatible with an association between HRV-5 and NHL, whether causal or not.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
A Lawoko, B Johansson, D Rabinayaran, R Pipkorn, J Blomberg (2000)  Increased immunoglobulin G, but not M, binding to endogenous retroviral antigens in HIV-1 infected persons   J Med Virol 62: 4. 435-44  
Abstract: The modes of interaction between products of human endogenous retroviral (HERV) sequences and the immune system are largely unknown. In HIV infected persons, an exogenous retrovirus adds further complexity to the situation. Therefore, 14 synthetic peptides with sequences derived from conserved regions of various endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) and from related exogenous retroviruses were used to search for IgG and IgM antibodies that bind to such antigens in 15 HIV-1 seropositive and 17 seronegative immunosuppressed patients. IgG binding to three peptides, namely, the C-terminal half of murine leukemia virus (MLV) capsid protein, the conserved portion of HERV-H transmembrane protein, and the Pol region of human mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV)-like (HML3) sequence, was observed in both groups. Binding was, however, more frequent and more firm in HIV-1 positive samples (P<0.0001, Wilcoxon rank sum test). IgM binding to the same peptides showed no significant differentiation between the two groups of patients. Binding to both immunoglobulin isotypes was sometimes variable over time in both groups. No correlation of either IgG or IgM peptide binding with progression to AIDS in HIV-1 infected individuals was observed. Inhibition studies using analogous endogenous and exogenous retroviral peptides, including HIV-1, demonstrated specificity of the IgG antibodies for a narrow range of MLV- and MMTV-like retroviral antigens, and excluded cross-reactivity of antibodies to HIV-1 as a cause of these observations. Thus, unlike IgG, IgM binding to retroviral antigens was ubiquitous. It is suggested that anti-HERV IgM belong to a class of natural antibodies and might serve as primers in the mediation of humoral immune responses to more or less related exogenous retroviruses. Increased IgG binding in HIV-1 infected individuals could result from such priming, or reflect higher HERV antigen expression.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
R Aspholm, S Zuo, J Fohlman, G Frisk, G Friman, J Blomberg (1999)  A novel serological technique : polymerase chain reaction enhanced immunoassay. Application to enterovirus IgM diagnosis   J Virol Methods 80: 2. 187-96  
Abstract: The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method is a sensitive, specific and rapid technique for virus detection. The principles of a PCR enhanced immunoassay (PIA) are described. The method combines solid phase serological techniques with the PCR, providing a versatile and sensitive method for antibody detection. By linking the antigenicity of virus particles with their content of nucleic acid, the method provides new possibilities for virus serology: for example, antibody specificity can be coupled to viral sequence in patients with chronic infections caused by highly variable viruses such as HIV and HCV. An application of the PIA technique is described for the detection of anti-enterovirus IgM. IgM is captured to anti-human IgM-coated microwell plates. The anti-enterovirus IgM is allowed to bind crude enterovirus antigen. Bound virus is heat denatured and the released RNA is used as a template for reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR) amplification. Amplicons are detected by hybridisation to an affinity labelled probe in a microwell colorimetric assay. In a pilot study, 18 serum specimens from patients with enterovirus infections were examined. Using a mixture of ten crude enterovirus antigens, the frequency of IgM positivity was 6/18 (33%). Titres between 1/500 and 1/100,000 were recorded. Predominantly type-specific antibodies were detected. The results were compared with a procapsid enterovirus radioimmunoassay (RIA). After further optimisation, the PIA has the potential to be a clinically useful assay for the detection of antiviral antibodies.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
M L Andersson, M Lindeskog, P Medstrand, B Westley, F May, J Blomberg (1999)  Diversity of human endogenous retrovirus class II-like sequences   J Gen Virol 80 ( Pt 1): 255-60  
Abstract: Class II human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs), often referred to as mouse mammary tumour virus (MMTV)-like or HERV-K elements, have similarities to several animal infectious retroviruses. Single clones from each of nine class II HERV groups (NMWV 1 to NMWV 9), isolated from a human breast cancer cell genomic library, were sequenced over a 244 bp stretch of the conserved reverse transcriptase region. These sequences were aligned to related exogenous and endogenous retroviruses and a phylogenetic tree was constructed. Sequences with more than 80% identity were considered as members of one group and we report here that the class II HERV family consists of at least ten groups. Three of the sequenced clones, from groups NMWV 3, 7 and 9, could not be related to any other previously identified elements and constituted their own groups. NMWV 8 had no similarity to any retroviral sequences in the sequenced region and is so far considered to be non-retroviral.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
A L Lawoko, B Johansson, S Hjalmarsson, B Christensson, B Ljungberg, L Al-Khalili, M Sjolund, R Pipkorn, E M Fenyo, J Blomberg (1999)  Comparative studies on neutralisation of primary HIV-1 isolates by human sera and rabbit anti-V3 peptide sera   J Med Virol 59: 2. 169-79  
Abstract: IgG binding to V3 peptides and serum neutralising responses were studied in four HIV-1 infected individuals with progressive disease over a period of 31-70 months. The 18-20 mer peptides comprised residues 299-317 (numbering of HIV1 MN) in the N-terminal half of the V3 loop of the envelope glycoprotein gp120 and were derived from the sequences of autologous, as well as heterologous isolates. All four individuals studied lacked anti-V3 IgG binding to at least one autologous V3 sequence. V3 peptides to which autologous sera lacked binding IgG were all immunogenic in rabbits and induced antisera that were broadly cross-reactive by EIA and broadly cross-neutralising to primary HIV-1 isolates. This indicates that the peptides are immunogenic per se and that the respective human hosts have selective defects in recognising the corresponding V3 sequences. Despite the absence of antibody binding to autologous V3 peptides, the human sera had neutralising antibodies to autologous (three out of four cases), as well as heterologous isolates (all cases). Moreover, in vitro exposure of the patients' isolates to autologous neutralising serum or the homologous rabbit antiserum selected for variants with amino acid substitutions close to the crown of the V3 loop or in regions outside the sequence corresponding to peptides used for immunisation. The amino acid exchanges affected V3 positions known to be antigenic and which are also prone to change successively in infected persons. It is likely that neutralising antibodies recognise both linear and conformational epitopes in the V3 loop. Apparently, there are several, but restricted, numbers of ways for this structure to change its conformation and thereby give rise to neutralisation resistant viruses.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
H Yin, P Medstrand, A Kristofferson, U Dietrich, P Aman, J Blomberg (1999)  Characterization of human MMTV-like (HML) elements similar to a sequence that was highly expressed in a human breast cancer : further definition of the HML-6 group   Virology 256: 1. 22-35  
Abstract: Previously, we found a retroviral sequence, HML-6.2BC1, to be expressed at high levels in a multifocal ductal breast cancer from a 41-year-old woman who also developed ovarian carcinoma. The sequence of a human genomic clone (HML-6.28) selected by high-stringency hybridization with HML-6.2BC1 is reported here. It was 99% identical to HML-6.2BC1 and gave the same restriction fragments as total DNA. HML-6.28 is a 4.7-kb provirus with a 5'LTR, truncated in RT. Data from two similar genomic clones and sequences found in GenBank are also reported. Overlaps between them gave a rather complete picture of the HML-6.2BC1-like human endogenous retroviral elements. Work with somatic cell hybrids and FISH localized HML-6.28 to chromosome 6, band p21, close to the MHC region. The causal role of HML-6.28 in breast cancer remains unclear. Nevertheless, the ca. 20 Myr old HML-6 sequences enabled the definition of common and unique features of type A, B, and D (ABD) retroviruses. In Gag, HML-6 has no intervening sequences between matrix and capsid proteins, unlike extant exogenous ABD viruses, possibly an ancestral feature. Alignment of the dUTPase showed it to be present in all ABD viruses, but gave a phylogenetic tree different from trees made from other ABD genes, indicating a distinct phylogeny of dUTPase. A conserved 24-mer sequence in the amino terminus of some ABD envelope genes suggested a conserved function.
Notes: Case Reports xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
M Lindeskog, D L Mager, J Blomberg (1999)  Isolation of a human endogenous retroviral HERV-H element with an open env reading frame   Virology 258: 2. 441-50  
Abstract: About 100 elements of the human endogenous retroviral HERV-H family have full-length env genes potentially coding for Env proteins with sequences highly similar to the immunosuppressive peptide CKS-17 from the MLV transmembrane protein p15E. However, previously sequenced HERV-H env genes have contained stop codons or framehifts. To isolate elements with open env reading frames, we first tried to assess the diversity of HERV-H env genes by comparing PCR-generated env sequences from genomic DNA with published HERV-H sequences. A region at the beginning of env displayed a similarity of 84-98% among 15 different elements. We then used a probe from one of the PCR-generated clones, 98% similar to the consensus sequence in this region, to screen a human genomic lambda library. Three HERV-H elements displaying ca. 98% identity in the env gene were isolated and were shown to have integrated relatively recently, after the divergence of the orangutan and the african great ape lineages. One of these elements, HERV-H19, had a 1752-bp open env reading frame, producing a 77-kDa Env protein in in vitro translation reactions. This is the first demonstration of a coding competent member of the HERV-H family. These findings raise the possibility that HERV-H Env proteins may play a biological role in human cells.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
M Berg, C Ehrenborg, J Blomberg, R Pipkorn, A L Berg (1998)  Two domains of the Borna disease virus p40 protein are required for interaction with the p23 protein   J Gen Virol 79 ( Pt 12): 2957-63  
Abstract: Borna disease virus (BDV) has five major open reading frames, which encode the proteins p40, p23, gp18, p57 and p190. By analogy with other negative-strand RNA viruses, p40 is a putative nucleoprotein and p23 is a putative phosphoprotein. These proteins are known to form complexes with each other and with the polymerase protein in other viruses. In this paper, it is shown that BDV p40 and p23 can form complexes with each other in infected cells. Furthermore, the amino acids of p40 that are necessary for formation of this complex have been mapped.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
M Lindeskog, P Medstrand, A A Cunningham, J Blomberg (1998)  Coamplification and dispersion of adjacent human endogenous retroviral HERV-H and HERV-E elements; presence of spliced hybrid transcripts in normal leukocytes   Virology 244: 1. 219-29  
Abstract: In an RT-PCR study of HERV-H spliced subgenomic transcripts, we found transcripts with HERV-H leader and protease-encoding sequences spliced to HERV-E integrase-encoding sequences in lymphocytes from healthy blood donors. In other cell types, including two T-cell leukemia cell lines, these transcripts were absent. The PCR fragments of the hybrid transcripts contained two open reading frames (ORFs). One was a hybrid HERV-H protease/HERV-E integrase ORF and the other was the HERV-E envelope surface glycoprotein ORF. Alternative splice products were also identified. The genomic DNA origin of the hybrid transcripts was shown to be a HERV-H element with a large 3'-end deletion, adjacent to a HERV-E element lacking the 5'-LTR. This hybrid structure was shown to be amplified and dispersed to six different human chromosomes. Thus, a relatively large part of full-length HERV-E elements (15-20%) is potentially under the transcriptional control of HERV-H LTRs. The HERV-H/HERV-E junction was present in multiple copies also in the chimpanzee and gorilla, but not in the orangutan or old world monkeys.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
E Tynell, S Andersson, E Lithander, M Arneborn, J Blomberg, H B Hansson, A Krook, M Nomberg, K Ramstedt, A Shanwell, A Bjorkman (1998)  Screening for human T cell leukaemia/lymphoma virus among blood donors in Sweden : cost effectiveness analysis   Bmj 316: 7142. 1417-22  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To analyse the cost effectiveness of a national programme to screen blood donors for infection with the human T cell leukaemia/lymphoma virus. DESIGN: Three models for calculating the costs and benefits of screening were developed. The first model analysed the cost of continuously testing all donations; the second analysed the cost of initially testing new blood donors and then retesting them after five years; the third analysed the cost of testing donors only at the time of their first donation. Patients who had received blood components from donors confirmed to be infected with the virus were offered testing. SETTING: Sweden. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Prevalence of infection with the virus among blood donors, the risk of transmission of the virus, screening costs, and the outcome of infection. RESULTS: 648 497 donations were tested for the virus; 1625 samples tested positive by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay. 6 were confirmed positive by western blotting. The prevalence of infection with the virus was 2/100 000 donors. 35 patients who had received blood infected with the virus were tested; 3 were positive. The cost of testing every donation was calculated to be $3.02m (1.88m pounds); this is 18 times higher than the cost of testing new donors only, and only 1 additional positive donor would be discovered in 7 years. Regardless of the model used, screening was estimated to prevent only 1 death every 200 years at a minimum cost of $36m (22.5m pounds). CONCLUSION: Based on these estimates the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare decided that only new blood donors would be screened for infection with the virus.
Notes: Journal Article xD;England
A Krook, J Albert, S Andersson, G Biberfeld, J Blomberg, I Eklund, A Engstrom, I Julander, K Kall, C Martin, P Stendahl, J Struve, A Sonnerborg (1997)  Prevalence and risk factors for HTLV-II infection in 913 injecting drug users in Stockholm, 1994   J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr Hum Retrovirol 15: 5. 381-6  
Abstract: The prevalence and risk factors for acquisition of human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I and II (HTLV-I and II) were investigated in a prospective study of 913 injecting drug users (IDUs) in Stockholm in 1994. Epidemiologic data were recorded, and blood samples were tested for antibodies against HTLV-I and HTLV-II; human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) types 1 and 2; and hepatitis A (HAV), B (HBV), C (HCV), and D (HDV). Positive serologic results for HTLV were confirmed by Western blot (WB) and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Of the 905 participants with conclusive HTLV-II status, 29 (3.2%) were HTLV-II positive, and all but three were of Nordic descent. None was HTLV-I infected. One person was infected as early as 1981, before HIV had reached the IDU population in Sweden. The prevalence of HTLV-II infection was 12% among HIV-1-seropositive and 1.8% among HIV-1-seronegative participants. The overall seroprevalences were 14% for HIV-1, 0% for HIV-2, 41% for HAV, 75% for HBV, 92% for HCV, and 8% for HDV. Although amphetamine has been the main injecting drug in Sweden for several decades, heroin abuse combined with a debut of injecting drugs before 1975 was identified as the most important risk factor associated with HTLV-II infection. HAV and HIV seropositivity were also independent risk factors.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states xD;official publication of the International Retrovirology Association
P Medstrand, D L Mager, H Yin, U Dietrich, J Blomberg (1997)  Structure and genomic organization of a novel human endogenous retrovirus family : HERV-K (HML-6)   J Gen Virol 78 ( Pt 7): 1731-44  
Abstract: Prototypic elements of a novel human endogenous retrovirus (HERV) family were identified and cloned from a human genomic library by the use of a pol fragment, HML-6, related to type A and type B retroviruses and class II HERVs. Out of 39 polhybridizing clones, five contained structures of full-length retroviral proviruses, with regions showing similarity to gag, pol and env, flanked by long terminal repeats (LTRs). Restriction mapping and partial sequence analysis of each full-length clone revealed few conserved restriction sites among HML-6 genomes, and about 20% sequence divergence over the reverse transcriptase region sequenced, suggesting that HML-6 constitutes a heterogeneous, but distinct family of elements belonging to the HERV-K superfamily. Sequence analysis of two clones, HML-6p and HML-6.17, revealed a lysine (K) tRNA UUU primer-binding site, and 40-68% nucleotide sequence similarity to LTR, gag, pro, pol and env regions of type B retroviruses and class II HERVs. HERV-K (HML-6) elements are present at about 30-40 copies per haploid genome. The HML-6 LTRs contain putative progesterone-responsive elements, which may be involved in the regulation of HML-6 expression. Furthermore, there are about 50 additional solitary HML-6 LTRs per haploid genome. Such LTRs were integrated within the pol region of two clones belonging to the same HML-6 family, indicating that some site preference may be involved in HERV integration.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
M Lindeskog, J Blomberg (1997)  Spliced human endogenous retroviral HERV-H env transcripts in T-cell leukaemia cell lines and normal leukocytes : alternative splicing pattern of HERV-H transcripts   J Gen Virol 78 ( Pt 10): 2575-85  
Abstract: The majority of human endogenous retroviral HERV-H elements in the human genome have large deletions in pol and lack most of env, 5-10% are more or less complete with a potentially immunosuppressive transmembrane protein-encoding env region. Spliced HERV-H env transcripts were detected in T-cell leukaemia cell lines and lymphocytes from healthy blood donors by using RT-PCR. The transcripts all contained a splice donor in the leader region downstream from the primer-binding site and a previously unreported splice acceptor in the integrase-encoding region of pol, absent in the HERV-H deletion elements. In singly spliced transcripts the leader and integrase regions were joined directly whereas in multiply spliced transcripts they were joined with an alternative exon from the protease-encoding region located between the two regions. env transcripts from three different HERV-H elements were identified: one element similar to a HERV-H consensus sequence was primarily amplified from the T-cell leukaemia cell lines and two other more defective elements were amplified from normal lymphocytes. One of these elements was shown to be a reintegrated spliced transcript where the protease and integrase regions were joined, removing most of pol but leaving gag intact. Other spliced transcripts, joining the protease region and the 3'-LTR, were also amplified. The fact that HERV-H elements with an intact env splice acceptor also use the splice sites in the protease-encoding region suggests that this unusual multiple splice pattern could have a biological function in the intact HERV-H.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
H Yin, P Medstrand, M L Andersson, A Borg, H Olsson, J Blomberg (1997)  Transcription of human endogenous retroviral sequences related to mouse mammary tumor virus in human breast and placenta : similar pattern in most malignant and nonmalignant breast tissues   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 13: 6. 507-16  
Abstract: The human genome contains a large variety of sequences related to the mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV). We have investigated the range of expression of human endogenous retroviral sequences (HERVs) related to MMTV (human MMTV-like; HML) as RNA in 60 breast cancers, 8 nonmalignant breast tissues, and 9 placentas. This was monitored using HML group-specific oligonucleotide probes in hybridizations toward PCR amplificates of HML pol sequences and internal control. The degree of expression of five HML groups varied between individuals and between tissues. On average, all HML groups were less expressed in breast tissues than in placenta. The hybridization signals of some HML RNAs were strongly correlated, indicating a nonstochastic mechanism and a concerted regulation of their expression. The PCR product from one breast cancer (BC 6), which gave an exceptionally high expression with probe hml-6, with a 20 times stronger signal than the rest of the cancers, was cloned and sequenced. The HML-6 transcript sequences were homogeneous in BC 6. The most predominant clone derived from the cancer was used as a probe in Southern hybridizations. The same restriction fragments were detected in human breast tissues, PBMCs (peripheral blood mononuclear cells), and breast cancer cell lines, except for one of the breast cancers and one of the nonmalignant breast tissues, which gave different banding patterns. A comparison of HML expression in normal and malignant breast tissue from the same individual would have been more precise than our comparison of samples from different persons. Bearing this limitation in mind, with a single exception, human MMTV-like sequences were not more actively expressed in malignant than in nonmalignant breast tissues. Nevertheless, an interesting diversity in their expression, especially between individuals, was found.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
M L Andersson, P Medstrand, H Yin, J Blomberg (1996)  Differential expression of human endogenous retroviral sequences similar to mouse mammary tumor virus in normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 12: 9. 833-40  
Abstract: Mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV) is a retrovirus that causes breast cancer in certain strains of mice. In a previous study we identified, by sequencing clones from human lymphocytes, six groups with similarities to MMTV. Using a primer pair derived from pol sequences conserved within types A, B, and D retroviruses and probes from the six human MMTV-like (HML-1 to HML-6) groups in an internally controlled hybridization assay we investigated the normal variation of expression in PBMCs. Variations occurred within all groups but was most significant within group HML-1, where hybridization signals differed by more than 500-fold between individuals. Groups HML-2 and HML-3 showed consistently stronger hybridization signals than groups HML-1 and HML-5, while group HML-6 resulted in weak signals for all individuals. Stringent hybridization of the amplified cDNA to 20 individual HML clones also demonstrated a marked heterogeneity of expression. Hybridization signals from some groups and sequences were found to be correlated, either in a positive or negative fashion. RNA isolated from PBMCs collected from two donors at four different time points (in the morning and in the afternoon on the same day, repeated 1 week later) was also analyzed using the six hml probes. A small variation in hybridization signals was seen in samples collected on the same day, but a larger difference was observed in samples taken 1 week later. The correlations and the differences in the expression of HMLs between individuals implicate a complex transcriptional regulation system of these sequences.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
A Bengtsson, J Blomberg, O Nived, R Pipkorn, L Toth, G Sturfelt (1996)  Selective antibody reactivity with peptides from human endogenous retroviruses and nonviral poly(amino acids) in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus   Arthritis Rheum 39: 10. 1654-63  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To investigate antibody responses to a broad panel of peptides derived from human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) among unselected patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). METHODS: In sera obtained from 69 patients with SLE and healthy blood donors, immunoassay was used to measure levels of antibody against synthetic peptides derived from HERVs, exogenous retroviruses, and nonviral poly(amino acids). RESULTS: Measurement by immunoassay revealed increased frequencies of antiretroviral antibodies against 2 peptides derived from the env gene of the type C-like class, which includes ERV-9 and HERV-H, and against 2 peptides from the gag region of human T lymphotropic virus type I-related endogenous sequence 1, in patients with SLE. Antibodies to 2 nonviral peptides, polyhistidine and polyproline, were also overrepresented in patient sera. In 1 patient, longitudinal data obtained over a period of 12 years indicated that the concentrations of certain antiretroviral antibodies varied according to disease activity. CONCLUSION: Reactivity to certain type C HERV-derived antigens was found among patients with SLE. This reactivity could be explained by increased exposure to cross-reactive epitopes from essentially complete type C HERVs.
Notes: Case Reports xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
S A Tswana, L Nystrom, S R Moyo, J Blomberg, J Tianani, M Nzara, L Chieza (1995)  Hospital-based study of sexually transmitted diseases at Murewa rural district hospital, Zimbabwe 1991-1992   Sex Transm Dis 22: 1. 1-6  
Abstract: BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: In Zimbabwe, sexually transmitted diseases are highly prevalent and represent a significant amount of the workload for physicians. GOAL OF THIS STUDY: To estimate the prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases and human immunodeficiency virus as well as symptoms related to sexually transmitted diseases. STUDY DESIGN: This was a cross-sectional study of 500 volunteers (285 women and 215 men) attending an sexually transmitted disease clinic in the Murewa District, 100 km northeast of the capital, Harare. Information on background characteristics and symptoms were obtained with a standardized questionnaire, and samples were collected and immediately transported to the laboratory for examination. RESULTS: The majority of the patients were 20-29 years old. Half of the men and 12% of the women had never been married, and 7.9% of the men and 12% of the women were divorced. Genital ulcers and dysuria were the most prevalent symptoms in men (64% and 62%, respectively). In women, the most prevalent symptoms were lower vaginal discharge and lower abdominal pain (91% and 79%, respectively). Almost 50% of the men and women were positive for human immunodeficiency virus-1 antibodies. The prevalence of Treponema pallidum and Neisseria gonorrhoeae was 15% and 18%, respectively, in men and 19% and 10%, respectively, in women. Chlamydia trachomatis showed the lowest prevalence (8%) in both sexes. No relationship was found between human immunodeficiency virus and other sexually transmitted diseases. CONCLUSION: Women who enter a sexually transmitted disease clinic with vaginal discharge or lower abdominal pain should be tested for several sexually transmitted diseases and human immunodeficiency virus. Men with dysuria or urethral discharge who enter such clinics should at least be tested for Neisseria gonorrhoeae.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
S R Moyo, S A Tswana, L Nystrom, S Bergstrom, J Blomberg, A Ljungh (1995)  Intrauterine death and infections during pregnancy   Int J Gynaecol Obstet 51: 3. 211-8  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To elucidate whether microbial infections are involved in the etiology of intrauterine death. METHODS: One hundred four cases of stillbirth of unknown etiology and 96 age- and parity-matched referents with live births were analyzed with respect to microbial infection by cultures from the placenta, endocervix and internal organs of the fetuses, external sites of the babies and fetuses, and by serology for bacteria, viruses and Toxoplasma gondii. RESULTS: In 17 cases in whom no other infectious agent was diagnosed, Escherichia coli was isolated from the placenta and one or more internal fetal organs. Tests for Treponema pallidum and Toxoplasma gondii were more frequently positive in cases than in referents (O.R. 8.3 and 3.9, respectively). There was no increased risk for intrauterine death in women with human immunodeficiency virus, cytomegalovirus, herpes simplex virus or rubella virus. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings indicate that infections remain an important cause of intrauterine death in Zimbabwe.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Ireland
A Lawoko, B Johansson, R Dash, L Falck, U Dietrich, R Pipkorn, B Nilehn, J Blomberg (1995)  Continuity and discontinuity in the anti-V3 IgG response of human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected persons in a cross-sectional and longitudinal study using synthetic peptides   J Infect Dis 172: 3. 682-90  
Abstract: The principal neutralization domain (PND) of the V3 region of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) gp120 is central to HIV pathogenesis. The IgG antibody response to PND was followed in 15 HIV-1-infected persons from southern Sweden over 2-5 years using 32 synthetic V3 peptides. Five peptides had amino acid sequences derived from isolates from each of 5 patients. Sera obtained simultaneously with isolate almost always reacted strongly with these cognate peptides; however, reactivity was undetectable in 1 patient's serum and short lived in the sera of another, indicating inducible holes in the antibody repertoire, which would facilitate dissemination of the corresponding virus strains. Reactivity to other V3 peptides correlated with sequence similarity to the cognate peptide. Strong, stable reactivity to peptides with sequences similar to a south Swedish V3-consensus was accompanied by transient activity to less similar ones. The latter may reflect viral variation, B lymphocyte clonal depletion, or both. Certain IgG responses appeared to preclude others, suggesting clonal dominance.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Chargui, D Dye, J Blomberg, C Desgranges, J L Touraine (1995)  The humanized severe combined immunodeficient mouse as a model for primary human humoral response against HIV1 peptides   J Immunol Methods 181: 1. 91-100  
Abstract: Adequate animal models for the study of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection are important for the analysis of specific cellular and humoral immune responses. Humanized severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice can be constructed either by injecting human peripheral blood lymphocytes (hu-PBL-SCID) or by transplanting human fetal tissues--liver, thymus and bone fragments--(SCID-hu) into these mice. Such animals can produce human immunoglobulins and SCID-hu mice exhibit circulating T and B lymphocytes of human origin. These humanized mice were injected with immunogenic HIV peptides and the specific humoral response was studied. A human antibody response was obtained after de novo contact with HIV1 peptides p583 and p642, from gp41. In SCID-hu mice, a primary, then a secondary response were demonstrated to occur with 225 mg/l of human immunoglobulin (Ig)M and 300-1860 mg/l human IgG. When tested in ELISA, these human antibodies recognized specifically both the immunization peptides and the HIV1 antigens. The antibody response was obviously of a primary nature since the human cells derived from naive fetal cells. When SCID mice received intraperitoneal injections of human peripheral blood lymphocytes pre-incubated in vitro with peptide p583 for 1 week, and when the resulting hu-PBL-SCID mice were injected with the same peptide, only IgM anti-HIV antibodies were produced (372-424 mg/l) and the switch to IgG antibodies did not occur. This model may provide a means to produce human monoclonal antibodies to HIV and to check candidate HIV vaccines.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Netherlands
J Blomberg, T Moestrup, J Frimand, B G Hansson, K Krogsgaard, L Grillner, E Nordenfelt (1994)  HTLV-I and -II in intravenous drug users from Sweden and Denmark   Scand J Infect Dis 26: 1. 23-6  
Abstract: 693 IVDU (intravenous drug user) sera from Copenhagen, Malmo and Stockholm were tested, 247 retro- and 446 prospectively, for antibodies to human T-lymphotropic virus (HTLV), types I and II, by means of a commercial whole-virus EIA and/or an HTLV-I/-II peptide-based EIA. Positive EIA reactions were checked and typed by electrophoretic immunoblotting, a differential peptide-based EIA and nucleic acid amplification/hybridization with HTLV-I and -II specific primers and probes. 3 (0.7%) of the prospectively tested IVDUs from Malmo, none of 100 from Stockholm and none of 45 from Copenhagen were HTLV-seropositive. The 3 Malmo IVDU cases were a female immigrant from South America, her male native Swedish spouse (both HTLV-I), and a male immigrant Italian heroinist (HTLV-II). We conclude that HTLV was uncommon among intravenous drug users, a sentinel population, in Sweden and Denmark during 1986 and 1989. However, the occurrence of 3 HTLV-positive cases in Malmo 1993 indicates that the situation can change rapidly.
Notes: Case Reports xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Sweden
J Blomberg, O Nived, R Pipkorn, A Bengtsson, D Erlinge, G Sturfelt (1994)  Increased antiretroviral antibody reactivity in sera from a defined population of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. Correlation with autoantibodies and clinical manifestations   Arthritis Rheum 37: 1. 57-66  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE. The implied role of retroviruses in the pathogenesis of murine systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) led us to study antiretroviral antibodies in a population-based SLE cohort. METHODS. Immunoassays using whole virus and synthetic peptides were performed on sera from 72 patients with SLE and 88 control subjects. RESULTS. Reactions with whole baboon endogenous virus occurred more frequently in patients with SLE, and correlated with the presence of anti-RNP and anti-Sm. Some retroviral env and gag peptides, several of which were similar to U1 small nuclear RNP, reacted more strongly in patients with SLE, and their presence was correlated with discoid rash, hematologic disorder, and other symptoms. CONCLUSION. These results provide circumstantial evidence for involvement of retroviruses in the pathogenesis of human SLE; further studies should be carried out using other techniques for measurement of retroviral expression.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
C Fraisier, A Ebersold, J Blomberg, C Desgranges (1994)  Primary in vitro immunization with multimeric synthetic peptides of HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins : generation of neutralizing human monoclonal antibodies   J Immunol Methods 176: 1. 9-22  
Abstract: Peripheral blood lymphocytes from healthy HIV-1 seronegative donors were immunized in vitro with the following synthetic peptides: (i) an octameric poly-L-lysine conjugated peptide of the HIV-1MN V3 loop and (ii) a resin bound synthetic peptide aa642-665 of HIV-1 gp41. Lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCL) were obtained by immortalization with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). We produced four LCL secreting human monoclonal antibodies (HuMoAbs) of the IgM isotype: three were directed against the V3 domain (FC10, FC81 and CF41) and one against aa642-665 (CA45C). Two of these HuMoAbs (FC81 and CA45C) reacted to viral surface antigen on HIV-1-infected cells. All the HuMoAbs inhibited 40-53% of cell fusion induced by HIV-1-infected H9 cells at 5 micrograms/ml. They also neutralized, at lower concentrations, cell-free infection with HIV-1MN, HIV-1IIIB and four primary clinical HIV-1 isolates. No enhancing activity of the HuMoAbs in the presence of complement was observed. The results presented here show the feasibility of generating neutralizing human monoclonal antibodies against HIV-1 by primary in vitro immunization with selected synthetic peptides of HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins. This approach has provided tools for further studies of synergistic neutralization assays, and generated potential immunoglobulin candidates for passive immunotherapy.
Notes: In Vitro xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
A Krook, J Blomberg (1994)  HTLV-II among injecting drug users in Stockholm   Scand J Infect Dis 26: 2. 129-32  
Abstract: 134 injecting drug users (IDUs) treated at the Department of Infectious Diseases of Roslagstull Hospital, Stockholm, were tested for antibodies to human T-lymphotropic virus, types I and II, by means of 2 HTLV-I/-II peptide-based enzyme immunoassays (EIAs), followed by a whole-virus EIA. Positive EIA reactions were checked and typed by electrophoretic immunoblotting with native HTLV-I and recombinant HTLV-I and -II proteins. 10 IDUs were diagnosed as HTLV-II seropositive. All 10 were of Scandinavian descent. Thus, like HIV-1, HTLV-II infection has entered the injecting drug user population in Stockholm.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Sweden
J Blomberg, A Lawoko, R Pipkorn, S Moyo, B E Malmvall, J Shao, R Dash, S Tswana (1993)  A survey of synthetic HIV-1 peptides with natural and chimeric sequences for differential reactivity with Zimbabwean, Tanzanian and Swedish HIV-1-positive sera   Aids 7: 6. 759-67  
Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To determine whether the known sequence differences between African and non-African HIV-1 strains are reflected in the serological response. DESIGN AND METHODS: We investigated the antibody reactivity of 34 Swedish, 30 Tanzanian and 42 Zimbabwean HIV-1-positive sera to 67 synthetic peptides with sequences from North American and African HIV-1 isolates, mostly derived from regions of gag and env known to be antigenic. Not all sera were tested against all peptides. RESULTS: Differences in frequency of reactivity were noted with peptides covering the entire third variable domain (V3), which is a primary neutralization determinant, and the carboxyl terminus of gp120, in two regions of gp41, and the carboxyl terminus of p24. In env Tanzanian sera reacted preferentially with a V3 peptide from the strain JY1 (Zaire). Gradual substitutions in the central motif in V3 of ELI from GLGQ to GPGR, typical of many non-African strains, led to a gradual increase in reactivity of many Swedish sera, but did not affect Tanzanian and Zimbabwean sera, suggesting that the major epitopes recognized by these African sera are outside GPGR. V3 peptides from the MN and Z3 strains reacted with most sera, but missed 30% of those of Tanzanian origin. In the carboxyl terminus of gp120 both sets of African sera reacted preferentially with peptides from strains JY1 and MAL. Swedish sera reacted strongest with analogues from strains Z321 and HXB2. In gp41, Swedish sera showed a weak preference for reactivity with HXB2-derived peptides in the immunodominant region (amino acids 590-620), and further towards the carboxyl terminus (amino acids 620-665). CONCLUSION: The differences in serological reactivity were as great between Zimbabwe and Tanzania as between the two African sets and the Swedish. The geographical differences in the pattern of reactivity with HIV peptides probably depend on both host and viral variation and may be developed into a seroepidemiological tool, useful for optimization of future HIV vaccines.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Klasse, R Pipkorn, J Blomberg, K H Han, B Hilton, J A Ferretti (1993)  Three-dimensional structure and antigenicity of transmembrane-protein peptides of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1. Effects of a neutralization-escape substitution   FEBS Lett 323: 1-2. 68-72  
Abstract: A point mutation (Ala-589 to Thr) in the transmembrane protein of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) has been shown to decrease the sensitivity of the virus to the neutralizing effect of human HIV-1 specific antibodies [(1990) J. Virol. 64, 3240-3248]. Here 17-residue peptides with the parental and mutant sequences were compared: the parental peptide bound antibodies of sera from HIV-1 infected persons more frequently and with higher affinity than the mutant peptide. However, according to circular dichroism (CD), NMR spectroscopy and molecular modelling the peptides have indistinguishable backbone conformations under a variety of experimental conditions. These techniques showed for both peptides that no ordered helix was present in water solution. However, for both peptides in alcohol-water solutions approximately 60% alpha-helix could be induced. The three-dimensional structures of these peptides provide a basis for understanding how this mutation in the transmembrane protein may affect the interaction with both the outer envelope glycoprotein and with antibodies.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Netherlands
P Medstrand, J Blomberg (1993)  Characterization of novel reverse transcriptase encoding human endogenous retroviral sequences similar to type A and type B retroviruses : differential transcription in normal human tissues   J Virol 67: 11. 6778-87  
Abstract: The polymerase chain reaction was used to amplify genomic DNA and reverse-transcribed RNA from human lymphocytes, using primers derived from conserved regions within the retroviral reverse transcriptase. Sequencing of 33 cloned amplification products revealed that a variety of sequences with similarity to mouse mammary tumor virus, mouse intracisternal A particle, and human endogenous retrovirus K10 were detected with this primer pair. The sequences were divided into six subgroups, with a nucleotide sequence dissimilarity of about 25% between the subgroups. Members within five of the subgroups were most closely related to human endogenous retrovirus K10 and mouse mammary tumor virus, whereas sequences of the sixth subgroup also showed similarity to mouse intracisternal A particle. Ten of the sequences had open reading frames with preference for silent mutations at conserved sites. Southern blot analysis showed that some HML (human endogenous MMTV-like) subgroups (HML-4 and HML-5) were present in a few copies (about 5), whereas others (HML-1 to HML-3 and HML-6) were present in at least 10 to 20 copies per genome. Northern (RNA) blot analysis revealed that several of the subgroups are differentially expressed in human normal tissues. A complex pattern of transcripts from about 12 to 1.4 kb was found in several of the tissues tested. However, the most abundant expression was detected in lung (all subgroups), skeletal muscle (HML-4 and HML-5), placenta (HML-2 and HML-5), and kidney (HML-2, HML-3 and HML-5). Expression of reverse transcriptase sequences in human tissues may have biological consequences. The described sequences are similar to elements which cause carcinoma and are immunoregulatory in mice. It remains to be seen whether human sequences also have such functions.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
M Lindeskog, P Medstrand, J Blomberg (1993)  Sequence variation of human endogenous retrovirus ERV9-related elements in an env region corresponding to an immunosuppressive peptide : transcription in normal and neoplastic cells   J Virol 67: 2. 1122-6  
Abstract: Evolutionarily conserved sequences corresponding to an immunosuppressive region in retroviral transmembrane proteins were amplified by the polymerase chain reaction from human genomic DNA and reverse-transcribed RNA from one glioma, three pieces of macroscopically normal brain tissue, kidney, lymphocytes, cultured embryonic lung cells, and a rhabdomyosarcoma cell line. Amplification products (125 bp) from DNA and RNA from the glioma and RNA from one normal piece of brain tissue were cloned and sequenced (45 clones). A variety of sequences similar to ERV9 (75 to 93%) were identified. Amplification products were immobilized on nylon filters and hybridized to four different synthetic oligonucleotides derived from the sequenced clones. Sequences without the stop codon seen in ERV9 in this region, possibly encoding functional immunosuppressive proteins, were present in RNA amplificates from all samples. The various cell types showed different hybridization patterns with the four probes. The open reading frame sequences were identified in genomic Southern blots, one probe detecting about 10 copies and another detecting a single copy. Northern (RNA) blots of mRNA from various normal human tissues revealed 2.5-kb (e.g., lung) and 10-kb (e.g., placenta) transcripts hybridizing to one of the probes.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Blomberg, M Robert-Guroff, W A Blattner, R Pipkorn (1992)  Type- and group-specific continuous antigenic determinants of HTLV. Use of synthetic peptides for serotyping of HTLV-I and -II infection   J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr 5: 3. 294-302  
Abstract: The human T lymphotropic viruses (HTLV-I and -II) are relatively common in subpopulations of certain countries, notably intravenous drug abusers in North America. Infections with these malignancy-associated human retroviruses are hard to discriminate with currently available commercial serological tests. We studied the distribution of antigenicity and the degree of cross-reactivity of epitopes in gag and env of the two viruses. Sequences in the carboxyl terminus of the matrix protein (MA) and the middle of the outer glycoprotein (SU) reacted in a type-specific fashion, while sequences from the capsid protein (CA), the carboxyl terminus of SU, and conserved portions of the transmembrane protein (TM) mainly reacted in a group-specific fashion, correlating with the degree of sequence dissimilarity between the two viruses. The serological discrimination obtained with the peptides was evaluated in a panel of 25 sera where infection with HTLV-I or -II had been typed by competition in a p24 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) or by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). After processing peptide results in a computer program, a typing result concordant with earlier results was obtained in 21 of 25 sera. Of the remaining five sera, four were labeled "too weak for typing" and one "HTLV of uncertain type" by the program. They did not react sufficiently strongly or clearly with the peptides to allow classification. A combination of synthetic peptides may become useful for serotyping HTLV infection and become an alternative to Western blots for confirmation of HTLV positivity.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
A Ebersold, V Boyer, P J Klasse, M Holnigue, C Fraisier, J M Cocchi, R Pipkorn, J Blomberg, C Desgranges (1992)  Human and murine monoclonal antibodies directed against a conserved sequence from gp41 (aa583-599) of human immunodeficiency virus type 1   Res Virol 143: 3. 179-91  
Abstract: Human spleen cells from an HIV-seropositive donor were immunized in vitro with the aa583-599 peptide conjugated to an heptalysyl core. This sequence was derived from the putatively HIV-immunosuppressive region of HIV1 gp41. The same conjugated peptide was used to immunize mice. One human and one mouse IgM monoclonal antibody (mAb) directed against the aa583-599 peptide were obtained. The two mAb had distinct patterns of reactivity against a panel of 42 peptides with modified sequences. Neither of the mAb inhibited the immunosuppressive effect of aa583-599 octopus-lys-conjugated peptide on anti-CD3 Ab-induced lymphoproliferation. In addition, both mAb did not neutralize cell-free virus transmission or enhance HIV infection. However, HmAb inhibited formation of syncytia between HIV1-infected (but not HIV2-infected cells) and non-infected target cells at concentrations above 20 micrograms/ml, whereas MmAb did not have any effect. The degree of conservation of the aa583-599 region makes HmAb a candidate for use as a group-specific reagent in future HIV1 passive immunotherapy protocols.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;France
P Medstrand, M Lindeskog, J Blomberg (1992)  Expression of human endogenous retroviral sequences in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of healthy individuals   J Gen Virol 73 ( Pt 9): 2463-6  
Abstract: The polymerase chain reaction was used to detect expression of retroviral sequences with oligonucleotide primers derived from conserved regions of the retroviral genome. Four primer pairs derived from gag and one from pol were used in amplification of reverse-transcribed total RNA prepared from peripheral blood mononuclear cells of seven blood donors. The amplification pattern was the same from each of the seven samples. Sequencing of cloned amplification products revealed that at least three subclasses of sequences related to the human endogenous retroviruses (HERV) RTVL-H, HERV-E and HERV-K, are expressed in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of healthy individuals. This has not been previously reported.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
P J Klasse, R Pipkorn, J Blomberg (1991)  A cluster of continuous antigenic structures in the transmembrane protein of HIV-1 : individual patterns of reactivity in human sera   Mol Immunol 28: 6. 613-22  
Abstract: We investigated the antigenicity of a highly conserved region in the transmembrane protein of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1). In order to identify antigenically important residues, amino-acid sequences of synthetic peptides representing this region were varied systematically: single residues were omitted from the sequence of HIV-env 583-599; threonines were substituted for pairs of residues in HIV-env 581-599; the sequences of heptadeca-peptides were shifted by single residues. The peptides were tested in an enzyme immuno-assay against fourteen HIV-1 antibody-positive human sera, which were previously found to react with HIV-env 583-599, and against rabbit antisera to the peptides HIV-env 583-599 and 586-606. Substitutions as well as deletions in the sequence 589-596 (AVERYLKD) aborgated the antigenicity of the peptides with most of the human sera. Changes outside this sequence affected the reactivities differentially. Six overlapping dodeca-peptides, shifted in the sequence by single residues, lacked antigenicity in a competition assay, suggesting antigenic dependence on an ordered peptide conformation, which the longer peptides may preferentially assume. 19- and 21-mers with overlapping sequences competed to different extents with each other for binding to the antibodies of 3 human sera, illustrating that more than one antigenic structure in this narrow region can be recognized by a single polyclonal serum.
Notes: In Vitro xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
A Lima-de-Faria, F Mitelman, J Blomberg, S Pfeifer-Ohlsson (1991)  Telomeric location of retroviral oncogenes in humans   Hereditas 114: 3. 207-11  
Abstract: The position relative to centromeres and telomeres has been investigated in 42 proto-oncogenes that have been localized in specific bands of the human chromosomes. It turned out that the 26 retroviral oncogenes had a predominant telon territory (near telomeres). The difference from the non-retrovirally transduced oncogenes is significant (p less than 0.01). Moreover, all oncogenes studied avoid the shortest and the longest arms. The results support the idea that genes with different properties tend to have different gene territories within the human chromosomes.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Sweden
M Soderstrom, J Blomberg, P Christensen, B Hovelius (1991)  Erythromycin and phenoxymethylpenicillin (penicillin V) in the treatment of respiratory tract infections as related to microbiological findings and serum C-reactive protein   Scand J Infect Dis 23: 3. 347-54  
Abstract: Respiratory tract pathogens (beta-haemolytic streptococci groups A, C and G, Haemophilus influenzae, Branhamella catarrhalis or pneumococci), were isolated from nasopharyngeal and/or throat swabs in 73/138 (53%) patients greater than 10 years of age with a clinical diagnosis of acute sinusitis, acute tonsillitis, purulent nasopharyngitis or acute bronchitis. Serological evidence of a viral infection (influenza A and B, parainfluenza 1, 2 and 3, respiratory syncytial virus, adenovirus) or Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection was found in 10% of the patients. The serum content of C-reactive protein (S-CRP) was increased (greater than 12 mg/l) in 26/33 (79%) patients with streptococci and in 22/59 (37%) patients without respiratory tract bacteria. In patients with a serological evidence of a virus tonsillitis, the S-CRP was also high (32-64 mg/l). At follow-up 10-12 days after the first visit, the clinical effect of erythromycin and penicillin V was judged to be similar (90% clinical effect). Relapse or re-infection with group A streptococci were seen in 7 patients (4 on erythromycin, 3 on penicillin). In another 6 patients (3 on erythromycin, 3 on penicillin), antibiotic treatment was switched owing to persisting symptoms, probably due to H. Influenzae infection in 3 cases. The patients' own estimates of their symptoms suggested treatment with erythromycin to have a more rapid effect than treatment with penicillin.
Notes: Clinical Trial xD;Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Randomized Controlled Trial xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Sweden
B Widegren, J Blomberg, U Arnason (1991)  The long leader sequence of the mouse ornithine decarboxylase mRNA, previously suspected to be a cloning artifact, is probably a product of recombination with MuLV-like retrovirus   Gene 109: 2. 303-5  
Abstract: Sequence analysis of the first 549 nucleotides (nt) of the non-translated 5' end of the cloned mouse ornithine decarboxylase (ODC; L-ornithine carboxy-lyase, EC sequence shows that this sequence is closely related to nt 1946-1395 of Moloney murine leukemia virus (MuLV). The viral sequence, however, is oriented anti-sense relative to the ODC sequence. This orientation makes it unlikely to be a cloning artifact mediated by reverse transcriptase, but rather a recombination between genomic DNA and a MuLV-like provirus. In the cell line, from which the cDNA clone originated, Katz and Kahana [EMBO J. 8 (1989) 1163-1167] have shown that an intragenic deletion and amplification of the ODC gene had taken place. We believe that an additional recombination also has occurred in this cell line. The cDNA clone studied was obtained after selecting for high ODC expression. It is conceivable that the retroviral sequence contains an intragenic enhancer which is also functional in the anti-sense orientation. The inserted sequence contains two repeats which share homology with known enhancer elements. The reported recombination event shows that caution is needed when selective pressure is applied for the isolation and characterization of genes.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
J Blomberg, E Vincic, C Jonsson, P Medstrand, R Pipkorn (1990)  Identification of regions of HIV-1 p24 reactive with sera which give "indeterminate" results in electrophoretic immunoblots with the help of long synthetic peptides   AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses 6: 12. 1363-72  
Abstract: We analyzed nine sera from persons unlikely to be HIV infected which had an IgG reactivity directed against HIV-1 p24, and in two cases also to its precursor p55, but to no other HIV proteins, nor to proteins of the H9 host cell, in electrophoretic immunoblots (EIB). These sera are also referred to as having an indeterminate HIV EIB pattern or as HIV antibody false positive sera. Seven of nine sera reacted with longer (61-77 amino acids) and none with shorter (17-25 amino acids) p24-derived peptides in enzyme immunoassays (EIAs). This is compatible with a conformational (discontinuous) nature of the epitopes involved in many false positive HIV-1 p24 antibody reactions. Four sera reacted with an N-terminal, one with an internal, and two with a C-terminal fragment. Each of the seven sera thus only reacted with one of the long p24 peptides. The specificity and singularity of the reaction was further demonstrated by competition and/or absorption experiments with synthetic peptides. In contrast, 18 of 20 confirmed HIV-1+ sera with p24 reactivity in EIB reacted with at least one and often several of the longer peptides, most frequently the C-terminal one. Thus, the distribution of peptide reactivity of true HIV-1 antibody-positive sera was different from that of the falsely reactive sera. According to two of several explanations, these antibodies may have arisen because of (1) molecular mimicry by chance or by functional selection, (2) immunization by activation, noninfectious exposure, or infection involving non-HIV endogenous or exogenous retroviral antigens. The latter gains some support from our finding of antibody reactions with capsid proteins of the simian viruses, simian sarcoma-associated virus (SSAV), and Mason-Pfizer monkey retrovirus in some of the p24 +/- p55 reactive sera.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Blomberg, P J Klasse, C Pehrson (1990)  Cross-reactivity with SIVmac in east African HIV-1-positive sera : evidence against double infection with HIV-1 and a SIVmac/HIV-2-like virus   Intervirology 31: 5. 276-84  
Abstract: IgG antibodies reactive with simian immunodeficiency virus isolated from a rhesus monkey suffering from simian acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (SIVmac, strain 239, a virus which is very closely related to human immunodeficiency virus type 2-HIV-2) were found in 18 of 120 Swedish and 8 of 11 east African confirmed HIV-1 antibody positive (HIV-1 ab+) sera, both by enzyme immunoassay and electrophoretic immunoblotting (p = 1 x 10(-6). In electrophoretic immunoblotting most of the cross-reactivity of SIVmac-reactive sera occurred on p27, the major gag protein of SIVmac. The possibility that SIVmac antibody reactivity could be due to double infection with HIV-1 and a SIVmac-related virus was eliminated by the results of absorptions between sera of Swedish and west and east African origin and viral antigens (SIVmac and North American or African/Haitian strains of HIV-1) coupled to agarose beads. HIV-2 ab+ and SIVmac reactive west African sera recognized SIVmac epitopes unrelated to HIV-1, whereas HIV-1 ab+, SIVmac reactive east African, and Swedish sera recognized SIVmac epitopes cross-reactive with epitopes present in both African and North American HIV-1 strains. No unique SIVmac-reactive African HIV-1 epitopes could thus be defined. Neither did absorption of Swedish and African HIV-1-positive sera with different HIV-1 strains (1 Haitian, 2 Zairian, and 1 North American) give evidence for unique epitopes.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Switzerland
P J Johansson, J Blomberg (1990)  Characterization of herpes simplex virus type 1-induced Fc receptor in its interaction with rabbit immunoglobulin G (IgG)   Apmis 98: 8. 685-94  
Abstract: Herpes simplex virus (HSV) induces a receptor on infected cells that is able to bind the Fc part of immunoglobulin G (IgG). We have examined some basic physicochemical and binding properties of the Fc receptor induced on HSV-1 infected green monkey kidney (GMK) cells in its interaction with rabbit IgG. Fixation of HSV-1 infected cells with glutaraldehyde, formaldehyde, acetone or ethanol did not inhibit the Fc binding ability. The binding specificity of the receptor was not affected by ethanol treatment and all subsequent binding studies were performed with cells treated with ethanol. The receptor was detected within 4 hours of infection and the binding increased until 16 hours post infection. The interaction between ligand and receptor was dependent on pH with a binding optimum around pH 8.0 and 8.5. EDTA, but not EGTA, inhibited receptor binding, suggesting participation of divalent cations in the receptor-ligand interaction. Inhibition of binding was also seen when cells were preincubated for 30 min at 56 degrees, 60 degrees and 100 degrees C in contrast with cells incubated at 37 degrees and 45 degrees C. The number of binding sites on ethanol-treated GMK cells 18 hours after infection was estimated to be around 4 x 10(6)/cell and the affinity constant at approximately 2 x 10(7) M-1.
Notes: In Vitro xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Denmark xD;acta pathologica, microbiologica, et immunologica Scandinavica
M S C Wilson, Jr Reitz, K Aldrich, P J Klasse, J Blomberg, R C Gallo, M Robert-Guroff (1990)  The site of an immune-selected point mutation in the transmembrane protein of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 does not constitute the neutralization epitope   J Virol 64: 7. 3240-8  
Abstract: We previously reported the in vitro generation of a neutralization-resistant variant of the molecularly cloned isolate of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), HXB2D. The molecular basis for the resistance was shown to be a point mutation in the env gene, causing the substitution of threonine for alanine at position 582 of gp41. Here, we show the variant to be resistant to syncytium inhibition as well as to neutralization by the immune-selecting serum. Moreover, 30% of HIV-positive human sera able to neutralize the parental virus have significantly decreased ability to neutralize the variant. As the A-to-T substitution thus has general relevance to the interaction of HIV-1 with the host immune system, we investigated further the biologic and immunologic bases for the altered properties. Synthetic peptides corresponding to the 582 region failed to compete in infectivity, neutralization, or syncytium inhibition assays and did not elicit neutralizing antibodies. Furthermore, human antibodies, affinity purified on synthetic peptide resins, bound to gp41 and peptides from the 582 region but did not possess neutralizing antibody activity. Some viral constructs in which the AVERY sequence in the 582 region was altered by site-directed mutagenesis were not infectious, indicating that the primary structure in this region is crucial for viral infectivity. Constructs predicted to possess a local secondary structure similar to that of the variant nevertheless behaved like the parental virus and remained neutralization sensitive. These results suggest that the requirements for neutralization resistance in this region are very precise. Our results with synthetic peptides show that the 582 region does not by itself constitute a neutralization epitope. Moreover, the degree of flexibility in amino acid substitution which allows maintenance of neutralization sensitivity suggests that position 582 does not form part of a noncontiguous neutralization epitope. The basis for neutralization resistance of the immune-selected variant is more likely a conformational change altering a neutralization epitope at a distant site.
Notes: In Vitro xD;Journal Article xD;United states
O Olusanya, J Blomberg (1990)  Antibody prevalence against rubella among hospital personnel in Nigeria : implications for health care system and immunisation policy   Acta Trop 48: 2. 101-7  
Abstract: Among 385 sera from Nigerian hospital personnel aged 15-39 years, 289 (75%) had an antibody titer corresponding to immunity against rubella, compared with 346 (90%) of the sera from Swedish women of the same age group. The frequency of high immune level against rubella did not change with age among Nigerians compared with a decrease in immunity with increasing age in the Swedish individuals. This probably is due to the differences between the dynamics of the development of natural immunity and immunity acquired through vaccination. In Nigeria, socio-economic factors were related with the degree of immune responses while sex was not. The results highlight the importance of immunization among hospital personnel and eventual vaccination of the whole population in Nigeria and the continuous surveillance of rubella immunity and periodic re-evaluation of immunization policies.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Netherlands
P J Klasse, J Blomberg, R Pipkorn (1990)  Differential IgG subclass responses to epitopes in transmembrane protein of HIV-1   Viral Immunol 3: 2. 89-98  
Abstract: The human IgG subclass response to epitopes of gp41, the transmembrane protein of HIV-1, was characterized. Twenty sera that reacted with a synthetic peptide, residues 583-599 of the env product, were analyzed in subclass-specific enzyme immunoassays with this and three other peptides: the inverted sequence (599-583; HIV-env:inv), an overlapping sequence (586-606), and one derived from the 3' end of the env gene (848-863). Also, the IgG subclass reactivities with the 583-599, 586-606 and 604-625 sequences of sera from 38 patients in various stages of HIV infection were studied. IgG1 was the most prevalent subclass. Most of the few IgG2-IgG4 reactions occurred with the peptide of the strongest antigenicity, HIV-env 604-625. The sera with detectable IgG2-IgG4 reactivity were titered to allow subclass comparisons in regions below absorbance plateaus. Two sera showed proportionately higher IgG3 relative to total IgG reactivity with HIV-env 583-599 than with HIV-env 586-606, which is indirect evidence that distinct antibody populations in these sera recognize these overlapping peptide sequences. Individual differences in the antibody response to this region may affect the immunologic control of the virus. Isotype analyses can contribute to dissection of these individualities, as shown here. High IgG reactivity with HIV-env 583-599, which was linked to absence of symptoms, resided largely in the IgG1 subclass. We found no other unambiguous association between clinical status and any IgG subclass pattern.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
L Dillner, Z Bekassy, N Jonsson, J Moreno-Lopez, J Blomberg (1989)  Detection of IgA antibodies against human papillomavirus in cervical secretions from patients with cervical intraepithelial neoplasia   Int J Cancer 43: 1. 36-40  
Abstract: Although human papillomavirus (HPV) is involved in the etiology of cervical carcinoma, there are no cervical carcinoma-specific HPV serologic tests available. We investigated the presence of broadly cross-reactive IgA antibodies to papillomavirus (PV) in cervico-vaginal secretions from patients with condylomata and cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). Purified bovine PV (BPV) virions were used as antigen in an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Forty-two women whose ages ranged from 20 to 50 participated in the study. Eight of 9 patients with CIN had IgA antibodies against PV in their cervical secretions. Three of 9 patients with koilocytosis and condylomas but no CIN had IgA antibodies to PV. Six of 24 women with normal Pap-smear and colposcopy also had IgA antibodies against PV in their cervical secretions. The proportion of IgA-positive cervical secretions was significantly higher in the CIN group than in the normal group (p less than 0.005). Our data suggest that IgA antibodies to PV may be a useful marker for CIN.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United states
J Blomberg, P J Klasse (1988)  Quantification of immunoglobulin on electrophoretic immunoblot strips as a tool for human immunodeficiency virus serodiagnosis   J Clin Microbiol 26: 1. 111-5  
Abstract: Electrophoretic immunoblotting (EIB [Western blotting]), the main method for verification of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) seropositivity, needs thorough characterization and standardization. We explored the possibilities of quantifying immunoglobulin G (IgG) bound to EIB strips both by densitometry of the peroxidase-stained bands and by measurement of radioactivity with labeled anti-HIV IgG. The radioactivity method is inherently more exact but was more cumbersome. However, despite saturation phenomena at high IgG densities, the densitometric method was more convenient and yielded reproducible estimates of the amount of bound IgG. We found it useful primarily for documentation of changes in the relative abundance of antibodies to different HIV proteins from individual patients over time. To explore the potential usefulness of the method, we studied a small set of HIV-seropositive persons. The average p24/gp41 color yield ratios and standard deviations in 3 persons with recent seroconversion, 15 healthy subjects, and 6 diseased HIV-seropositive persons were 6.6 +/- 0.9, 2.3 +/- 1.9, and 1.3 +/- 0.5, respectively. These data are in accord with previous qualitative or semiquantitative observations but are too limited for any conclusions regarding the use of quantitative EIB for prognostic use with individual patients. Quantitative EIB is a valuable tool for comparative methodological studies and for research on the protective role of anti-HIV antibodies in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome pathogenesis. Its possible use in prognostication for individual patients must be evaluated in long-term studies.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United states
J Blomberg, P J Klasse (1988)  Specificities and sensitivities of three systems for determination of antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus by electrophoretic immunoblotting   J Clin Microbiol 26: 1. 106-10  
Abstract: Electrophoretic immunoblotting (EIB [Western blotting]) has emerged as the major method for verification of seropositivity for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and therefore needs to be thoroughly characterized. The specificities of three EIB systems, our own and two commercial systems, were studied with anticellular sera and serial dilutions of human sera. We demonstrated that in one system, anti-HLA classes I and II gave bands comigrating with viral proteins, which can be controlled by EIB with uninfected H9 cells. In addition, animal antisera, including anti-immunoglobulin enzyme conjugates, occasionally reacted with HIV gag proteins, necessitating appropriate controls. Whereas none of 10 blood donors reacted at the standard dilution in serum (1/100 or 1/400) in any of the three systems, 6, 1, and 2 of 10 donors reacted with p24, p55, or both at a dilution of 1/10 for the three systems tested. Thus, nonspecific reactions can arise in several ways and justify critical EIB interpretation. The sensitivity of the three systems was studied by comparative titrations and direct quantification of bound immunoglobulin G (IgG). In the titrations with all three, the minor anti-HIV bands p53 and p64, coded from pol, were often detectable in higher dilutions than were antibodies to any other HIV protein. The minimum visible amounts of IgG bound per HIV protein band estimated by extra- and interpolation in densitometric curves and liquid scintillation counting of radiolabeled patient IgG were approximately 0.1, 0.05, and 0.02 ng per band in the three systems. One of the commercial systems had both the highest sensitivity and highest specificity.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;United states
P J Klasse, R Pipkorn, J Blomberg (1988)  Presence of antibodies to a putatively immunosuppressive part of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) envelope glycoprotein gp41 is strongly associated with health among HIV-positive subjects   Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 85: 14. 5225-9  
Abstract: The IgG response to gp41 (envelope glycoprotein of Mr 41,000) of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was studied with eight synthetic peptides derived from three different regions of the protein. We tested sera from 17 HIV-seronegative and 68 HIV-seropositive subjects in an enzyme immunoassay. No HIV antibody-negative serum reacted with any of the peptides. The peptide HIV-env 583-599 has a sequence similarity with immunosuppressive peptides derived from the transmembrane proteins of other retroviruses. Antibodies to this 17-mer (HIV-env 583-599; hereafter also referred to as pHIVIS, putative HIV immunosuppressive sequence) were detected in 27 of the 35 sera from healthy HIV-positive persons but only in 1 of the 33 sera from patients with HIV-related disease. Another 17-mer, displaced four amino acids N-terminally from pHIVIS, reacted with fewer of the sera from healthy seropositive subjects than pHIVIS but with no serum from ill seropositive patients. HIV-env 586-603, which shares two-thirds of its sequence with pHIVIS, reacted with the sera from nearly all subjects, regardless of clinical status. The remaining five peptides did not discriminate between healthy and ill seropositive subjects either but gave lower reactivity rates. HIV-positive sera thus exhibited distinct patterns of reactivity with subsequences of gp41. We have mapped two overlapping epitopes within a narrow part of gp41; antibodies to the most N-terminally located of the two--i.e., the pHIVIS-reactive antibodies--might counteract a possible immunosuppressive effect of gp41.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
L Bjorck, J Blomberg (1987)  Streptococcal protein G : a sensitive tool for detection of antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus proteins in Western blot analysis   Eur J Clin Microbiol 6: 4. 428-9  
Abstract: Protein G is a cell wall protein of group C and G streptococci which binds human IgG antibodies of all four subclasses with high affinity. This property of the molecule was utilized to develop a sensitive Western blot assay to detect antibodies against HIV proteins in patient sera.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Germany, west
P J Johansson, J Blomberg (1987)  Absence of host-cell influence on binding specificity of herpes simplex virus type 1 induced Fc receptor   Acta Pathol Microbiol Immunol Scand [C] 95: 3. 113-6  
Abstract: Herpes simplex virus (HSV) infected cells express on their surface a receptor with affinity to the Fc portion of immunoglobulin G (IgG). The influence of the infected host cell on the specificity of the receptor was investigated with radiolabeled human IgG Fc fragment and four animal IgGs (rabbit, dog, cow, and rat) and eight human and animal (primate, rabbit, dog, cow, and rat) fibroblastoid and epithelioid cell lines. Human IgG Fc, rabbit IgG and cow IgG bound to all cell lines infected with HSV type 1 strain F (HSV-1 F), whereas dog IgG and rat IgG did not bind to any of these cells. The same binding pattern was seen when two additional HSV-1 strains infected rabbit epithelial (GMK AH1) cells. The results support the view that the specificity of the HSV Fc receptor is mainly under viral control and not primarily influenced by the species of the host cell.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Denmark
J Klasse, J Blomberg (1987)  Patterns of antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus proteins in different subclasses of IgG   J Infect Dis 156: 6. 1026-30  
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
B Ryberg, J Blomberg, P J Klasse (1987)  Tropical spastic paraparesis associated with human T lymphotropic virus type I in an east African naturalised in Sweden   Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 295: 6610. 1380-1  
Notes: Case Reports xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
K Nivenius, J Blomberg, B Hagander, P A Mardh, C Schalen (1987)  Pediatric gastroenteritis in primary care and in hospitalized patients   Scand J Prim Health Care 5: 1. 41-5  
Abstract: One-hundred and fifty-seven consecutive children below seven years of age (primary care n = 48, hospitalized patients n = 109) with acute gastroenteritis of assumed infectious origin were studied. Rotavirus was demonstrated by electron microscopy of faeces in 44% of all patients. The occurrence of rotavirus among patients in primary care, 15%, was significantly lower than among hospitalized patients, 57% (p less than 0.01). Adenovirus was isolated in six per cent and enterovirus in two per cent of the patients with no differences between the two groups. Yersinia enterocolitica and Campylobacter jejuni were demonstrated in each three per cent. Salmonella and Shigella spp. or Giardia lamblia were not found in any cases. Thus the cause of gastroenteritis was established in 58% of the patients. This figure was lower among patients in primary care (27%) than among hospitalized patients (72%), a difference mainly due to the high occurrence of rotavirus in the latter group. Clostridium difficile was recovered in 20 cases (12%), eight of which harboured one more enteropathogenic agent. Cultures from the nose and throat revealed Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae, Branhamella catarrhalis or group A, C and G streptococci in 58% of the patients with no differences regarding the occurrence of rotavirus in faeces. Neither Clostridium difficile nor respiratory tract pathogens were found to play a role in causation of gastroenteritis in the children investigated.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Sweden
P J Johansson, J Blomberg (1986)  Anti-herpes simplex type 1 activity in IgG subclasses produced systemically and intrathecally in patients with herpes encephalitis   J Neurol 233: 5. 289-96  
Abstract: The role of the humoral immune response in herpes simplex encephalitis (HSE) is largely unknown. The finding that herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV 1) induced IgG Fc receptor binds to all IgG subclasses except IgG 3 prompted an investigation of anti-HSV activity in IgG subclasses from serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in ten patients with proven or highly probable HSE by means of a monoclonal antibody IgG subclass-specific solid-phase radioimmunoassay (SPRIA). In contrast to serum, CSF contained no or low anti-HSV IgG titres during the first 2 weeks of disease in five of seven patients tested. The IgG titres rose thereafter for at least 4 weeks after the start of illness and remained high in both serum and CSF up to 393 days. The anti-HSV IgG subclass distribution in serum was IgG 1 (ten of ten), IgG 2 (two of ten), IgG 3 (six of ten), and IgG 4 (six of ten). Two patients had a simultaneous anti-HSV IgG 3 and IgG 4 response. With the exception of one patient lacking anti-HSV IgG 4 and two patients lacking anti-HSV IgG 2, the subclass distribution in CSF was the same as in serum. The anti-HSV subclass distribution in sera from ten seropositive patients without evidence of recent herpes infection did not differ from that of the HSE patients, except that five of ten patients had simultaneous anti-HSV IgG 3 and IgG 4 responses. Thus we could not correlate the anti-HSV subclass response in patients with HSE with the subclass preference of the HSV-induced Fc receptor.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Germany, west
J Blomberg, R Faldt (1985)  Antibodies to human adult T cell leukaemia virus type I associated antigens in Swedish leukaemia patients and blood donors   Br J Haematol 60: 3. 555-7  
Abstract: Antibodies to antigens associated with human T cell leukaemia virus type I (HTLV I) in Swedish adult leukaemia patients and blood donors were sought with a sensitive screening test using membrane antigen prepared from virus producing cells (MA-ELISA). Four persons (one ALL, one AML and two healthy blood donors) out of 483 persons tested reacted in the test. However, they were negative in the more specific anti-p19 and anti-whole virion ELISA tests. The prevalence of sera with definite anti-HTLV I activity seems to be very low in Sweden. The finding of four MA-ELISA positive persons needs further investigation.
Notes: Journal Article xD;England
E Berntsson, J Blomberg, T Lagergard, B Trollfors (1985)  Etiology of community-acquired pneumonia in patients requiring hospitalization   Eur J Clin Microbiol 4: 3. 268-72  
Abstract: The etiology of community-acquired pneumonia was studied in 127 patients with roentgenologically verified pneumonia who needed hospitalization. Etiology was determined on the basis of a positive blood culture and/or a significant antibody titer increase. Streptococcus pneumoniae was the probable etiological agent in 69 patients, nontypeable Haemophilus influenzae in five patients, Streptococcus pyogenes in two patients, and Legionella pneumophila and Staphylococcus aureus in one patient each. Evidence of Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection was found in 18 patients and of Chlamydia psittaci infection in three patients. Influenza virus type A was the cause of infection in 15 patients. One patient had infection with influenza virus type B, one patient with parainfluenza virus type 1, and three patients with respiratory syncytial virus. In 20 patients there was evidence of infection with more than one microorganism. No etiological agent was found in 27 patients. Since Streptococcus pneumoniae was the predominant etiological agent penicillin should be drug of first choice in patients with pneumonia who need treatment in hospital. In young adults, however, the high frequency of Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection would justify the use of erythromycin or doxycycline as drug of first choice.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Germany, west
J Blomberg, G Folsch, I Nilsson, R Faldt (1985)  Immunoglobulin G antibodies binding to a synthetic peptide deduced from the nucleotide sequence of the env gene of HTLV I in patients with leukemia and rheumatoid arthritis, HLA sensitized persons and blood donors   Leuk Res 9: 9. 1111-6  
Abstract: A synthetic pentadecapeptide preparation, env 406-420, with an amino acid sequence deduced from the envelope glycoprotein gene of human T cell leukemia virus type I (HTLV I), was used as the antigen in an enzyme immunoassay for immunoglobulin G antibodies, exploring its usefulness for seroepidemiological purposes. The frequency of reactivity in the test groups, presented in decreasing order was: patients with rheumatoid arthritis; multitransfused nonleukemic patients; Japanese cases of adult T cell leukemia (ATL); HLA sensitized persons; Swedish cases of adult acute leukemia; and Swedish blood donors. Three American cases of ATL and 12 HTLV I seropositive monkeys did not react. In RF positive sera from patients with rheumatoid arthritis, no quantitative correlation between RF activity and anti-env 406-420 activity was seen. Anti-env 406-420 positive sera did not react or reacted only weakly with four control peptide preparations with different amino acid sequences. The experience with oligopeptide serology still is limited. Our results illustrate that unexpected cross-reactions which are hard to interpret can occur. Although absorption experiments indicated an HTLV I specific component of the reactivity, antibodies against epitopes of allo- and auto-immune specificity may also have participated.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;England
T Moestrup, B G Hansson, A Widell, J Blomberg, E Nordenfelt (1985)  Hepatitis B virus-DNA in the serum of patients followed-up longitudinally with acute and chronic hepatitis B   J Med Virol 17: 4. 337-44  
Abstract: Sera from 79 patients with acute self-limiting hepatitis, 17 patients with acute hepatitis B evolving into chronic HBsAg carriership, and 43 chronic HBsAg carriers without a history of acute hepatitis were analyzed for presence of hepatitis B virus (HBV)-DNA by a molecular hybridization technique. In acute self-limiting hepatitis, HBV-DNA was cleared within a few weeks after the onset of clinical symptoms. The longest period of DNA positivity observed in this group was 42 days. In 29 of 52 patients HBV-DNA was cleared before HBeAg disappeared. Among 17 patients who became chronic HBsAg carriers, HBV-DNA was present for more than 6 months in all but one. Most of the HBsAg carriers eventually cleared HBV-DNA. The DNA clearance frequently preceeded the conversion of HBeAg to anti-HBe. Thus, in many patients there was a transitional period with HBeAg but without HBV-DNA. HBV-DNA was found to be a better index of impending chronicity than HBeAg since persistence of HBeAg for more than 42 days was noted in 10% of the patients who nevertheless cleared HBsAg within 6 months. By that time all those patients had turned negative for HBV-DNA. On the other hand, in 16 of the 17 patients who became chronic carriers of HBsAg, HBV-DNA as well as HBeAg persisted for more than 6 months. The present results also suggest that infectivity in acute hepatitis B is a feature mainly of the presymptomatic and early symptomatic period.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Blomberg, I Nilsson, L Kjellen (1985)  HTLV in Sweden : antibodies to HTLV I antigens in experimental monkeys and their caretakers   Scand J Infect Dis 17: 2. 135-9  
Abstract: 252 monkeys kept at 4 different Swedish universities and laboratories for experimentation were screened for antibodies to HTLV I associated antigens by means of a sensitive membrane antigen enzyme immunoassay (MA-ELISA). 17/185 Macaca fascicularis, 1/56 M. mulatta, 0/1 Cercopithecus aetiops and 0/10 Saimirii squiureus had antibodies. All of 11 MA-ELISA positive animals which were subjected to further testing were also positive in a competition assay for anti-HTLV p19 antibodies and in an anti-whole virion enzyme immunoassay. One colony of 32 M. fascicularis monkeys from the Philippines contained 7 antibody-positive animals. Except for one M. fascicularis which suffered from a chronic dermal lesion, major disease was not observed in any of the antibody-positive animals. None of 28 animal caretakers or experimenters, of which several had been repeatedly exposed to blood from antibody-positive animals, had antibodies measurable by the MA-ELISA. The contagiosity for humans of the majority of the antibody-positive monkeys thus appears to be relatively low. We conclude that the presence in Sweden of HTLV I antibody-positive animals probably does not constitute a great health risk. However, we consider it appropriate that antibody-positive animals should be handled with special care.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Sweden
P J Johansson, E B Myhre, J Blomberg (1985)  Specificity of Fc receptors induced by herpes simplex virus type 1 : comparison of immunoglobulin G from different animal species   J Virol 56: 2. 489-94  
Abstract: Cells infected with herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) express a cell surface receptor able to bind the Fc portion of immunoglobulin G (IgG). Of the four human IgG subclasses, the HSV-1 Fc receptor, like staphylococcal protein A, binds to all except IgG3. In this paper, we describe the binding of a number of animal IgG and IgG subclass molecules to HSV-1-infected cells and compare this binding to that of protein A. Although only few representatives from each animal order were tested, we found that IgG from Carnivora and Rodentia did not bind or bound only slightly to the HSV-1 receptor, whereas IgG from Primates, Lagomorpha, and Artiodactyla bound well. This pattern was clearly different from the species spectrum of IgG binding of protein A. Differences between the two receptors were also found when animal IgG subclasses were tested. The pronounced differences in affinity for the HSV-1 Fc receptor between immunoglobulins from, for example, mouse and rabbit may influence the interpretation of animal studies with this virus.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
P J Johansson, T Hallberg, V A Oxelius, A Grubb, J Blomberg (1984)  Human immunoglobulin class and subclass specificity of Fc receptors induced by herpes simplex virus type 1   J Virol 50: 3. 796-804  
Abstract: Herpes simplex virus is known to induce an immunoglobulin-binding cell surface receptor in infected cells that utilizes a nonimmune mechanism. In the present paper, we report the immunoglobulin class and subclass specificity of this receptor. Of the human immunoglobulins G(IgG), IgA, IgM, and IgD, as well as the structurally related beta2 microglobulin, only IgG and its Fc portion exhibited an increased binding to herpes simplex virus-infected cells versus uninfected control cells. The IgG subclass specificity of the Fc receptor was studied in 37 radioiodinated IgG myeloma proteins representing all four subclasses. We found that IgG3 myeloma proteins did not bind to herpes simplex virus-infected cells to a greater extent than to uninfected cells. On the contrary, proteins belonging to the other subclasses exhibited an increased binding to herpes simplex virus-infected cells of the following relative magnitude: IgG4 greater than IgG1 greater than or equal to IgG2. This increment of binding could be abolished by addition of a large excess of human IgG Fc fragment. Evidence for the existence of a variable herpes simplex virus-specific binding ability between myeloma proteins belonging to the same IgG subclass was also obtained. Furthermore, we tested two other herpes simplex virus type 1 strains with a limited number of myeloma proteins with very similar results as with the herpes simplex virus type 1 F strain. Several sources of experimental artefacts were controlled, including the state of aggregation of the test proteins, the functional integrity of the Fc portion before and after radioiodination, and the subclass assignments. The implications for the biological role of the Fc receptor of herpes simplex virus are discussed.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;United states
J Blomberg, T Hedlund (1984)  Determination of rubella immunity by latex agglutination : its place in clinical routines   Scand J Infect Dis 16: 4. 327-33  
Abstract: The sensitivity and specificity of Rubascan (r) (RSC), a new latex agglutination test for rubella antibodies, was compared with those of the single radial hemolysis (SRH) and hemagglutination inhibition (HI) tests. We found RSC to have a sensitivity versus SRH and HI of 90-95% and 70-72%, respectively. RSC had a specificity versus SRH and HI of 97-100% and 96-100%, respectively. However, only 4/7 titer rises from cases of acute rubella or rubella vaccinations were clearly discernible in RSC. Moreover, only 2/10 anti-rubella IgG and IgM containing sera were RSC positive after protein A absorption although 10/10 were still HI positive. Additionally, the HI-positive IgM fractions from a sucrose density gradient centrifugation of an anti-rubella IgM containing serum were negative. We conclude that IgM reacts differently from IgG in RSC. We consider RSC a potentially useful reagent for determination of immunity in non-acute situations, and in non-pregnant persons like in pre-employment testing. This could be performed by relatively untrained personnel. On the other hand a rubella immunity test in pregnant women or in acute rubella should preferably be truly quantitative, in order to allow precise titer comparisons. In these cases, the interpretation of tests may require experience, and they should be performed at more specialized laboratories.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;Sweden
J Blomberg, I Nilsson, M Andersson (1983)  Viral antibody screening system that uses a standardized single dilution immunoglobulin G enzyme immunoassay with multiple antigens   J Clin Microbiol 17: 6. 1081-91  
Abstract: We present an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) system for the simultaneous determination of immunoglobulin G antibodies directed against several viruses. Antibodies to up to eight different viruses could be determined for three different sera on one microtitration plate. After subtraction of the absorbance values obtained with the control antigens, the viral antigen absorbancies were expressed as percentages of the absorbance obtained with a pooled immunoglobulin standard. This value, the relative antibody activity, was rapidly calculated by means of a computer directly connected to the ELISA photometer and was stored on magnetic disks, thereby facilitating seroepidemiological studies. The reproducibility of the relative antibody activity was calculated to at best +/- 3.6% (standard deviation) in an intraassay test and to at worst +/- 20.4% (standard deviation) in an interassay test. Each serum was analyzed only at a dilution of 1/75. The sensitivity of this single-dilution ELISA (SD-ELISA) method for the detection of titer rises was compared with those of conventional methods, mostly complement fixation but also hemagglutination inhibition. A total of 142 of 155 (92%) paired sera showing fourfold complement fixation or hemagglutination inhibition rises also showed significant results in SD-ELISA. A total of 22 of 57 (39%) significant relative antibody activity rises were significant in complement fixation or hemagglutination inhibition. Overall, up to twice as many significant titer rises could be detected with SD-ELISA. Most of these seemed to have a sound correlation with clinical data. The specificity of SD-ELISA was found to be similar to that of complement fixation, with some cross-reactions occurring between herpes simplex and varicella-zoster virus antigens and between parainfluenza viruses. We have found SD-ELISA to be a valuable clinical virological tool that supplements conventional serology.
Notes: Journal Article xD;United states
F H, Jr Reynolds, S Oroszlan, J Blomberg, J R Stephenson (1982)  Tyrosine phosphorylation sites common to transforming proteins encoded by Gardner and Snyder-Theilen FeSV   Virology 122: 1. 134-46  
Notes: N0I-CO-75380/CO/United States NCI xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;United states
J Blomberg, F H W J Van de Ven, Jr Reynolds, R P Nalewaik, J R Stephenson (1981)  Snyder-Theilen feline sarcoma virus P85 contains a single phosphotyrosine acceptor site recognized by its associated protein kinase   J Virol 38: 3. 886-94  
Abstract: Cells nonproductively transformed by a variant of the Snyder-Theilen strain of feline sarcoma virus (FeSV) expressed an 85,000-dalton polyprotein (P85) with associated tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity. We identified within this polyprotein a single tyrosine acceptor site for its enzyme activity. This acceptor site, as well as two serine phosphorylation sites localized with the p12 structural component of Snyder-Theilen FeSv P85, was phosphorylated in cells nonproductively transformed by Snyder-Theilen FeSv. In contrast, infection by Snyder-Theilen FeSV transformation-defective mutants resulted in phosphorylation only of the two serine acceptor sites, indicating phosphorylation of the tyrosine acceptor site to be transformation specific. In addition, we describe in vitro labeling conditions, using unfractionated cell extracts, which resulted in preferential phosphorylation of the single Snyder-Theilen FeSV tyrosine-specific acceptor site.
Notes: N01-CO-75380/CO/United States NCI xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;United states
K Alestig, J Blomberg (1981)  highly pathogenic exotic virus diseases   Lakartidningen 78: 3. 154-9  
Notes: English Abstract xD;Journal Article xD;Sweden
S Olofsson, J Blomberg, E Lycke (1981)  O-glycosidic carbohydrate-peptide linkages of Herpes simplex virus glycoproteins   Arch Virol 70: 4. 321-9  
Abstract: Electrophoretically purified HSV-specified glycoproteins with radiolabelled carbohydrates were subjected to mild alkaline borohydride treatment (0.5 M NaOH and 0.5 M NaBH4). The treatment liberated significant amounts of the labelled oligosaccharides. The latter demonstrated molecular weights of about 3,000 as determined by gel filtration. The glycoproteins involved probably belong to the gA/gB complex or gC. The results suggest that HSV specified glycoproteins contain oligosaccharides linked with an O-glycosidic bond to a threonine or serine residue of the polypeptide.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't xD;Austria
F H, Jr Reynolds, W J Van de Ven, J Blomberg, J R Stephenson (1981)  Differences in mechanisms of transformation by independent feline sarcoma virus isolates   J Virol 38: 3. 1084-9  
Abstract: The Gardner and Snyder-Theilen isolates of feline sarcoma virus (FeSV) have previously been shown to encode high-molecular-weight polyproteins with a transforming function and an associated tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity. Cells transformed by these viruses exhibited morphological alterations, elevated levels of phosphotyrosine, and a reduced capacity for binding epidermal growth factor. In addition, polyproteins encoded by both of these FeSV isolates bound to, and phosphorylated tyrosine acceptor sites within, a 150,000-molecular-weight cellular substrate (P150). McDonough FeSV-transformed cells resembled Gardner and Snyder-Theilen FeSV transformants with respect to morphological changes and a reduced capacity for epidermal growth factor binding. in contrast to the other two FeSV isolates, however, McDonough FeSV encoded as its major translational product a high-molecular-weight polyprotein with probable transforming function but without protein kinase activity detectable under similar assay conditions. Moreover, total cellular levels of phosphotyrosine remained unaltered in McDonough FeSV-transformed cells, and the major McDonough FeSV polyprotein translational product lacked binding affinity for P150. These findings argue for differences in the mechanisms of transformation by these independently derived FeSV isolates.
Notes: N0I-CO-75380/CO/United States NCI xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;United states
J Taranger, J Blomberg, O Strannegard (1981)  Intrauterine varicella : a report of two cases associated with hyper-A-immunoglobulinemia   Scand J Infect Dis 13: 4. 297-300  
Abstract: Varicella during pregnancy may occasionally harm the fetus. This report described one case of congenital varicella syndrome and another of infantile herpes zoster after maternal varicella in the 16th and 29th week of pregnancy, respectively. A remarkable finding was that both mothers and infants had raised levels of serum IgA. This suggests that varicella is prone to lead to congenital disease in infants of pregnant women with an immunologic, perhaps genetically determined abnormality.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Sweden
F H, Jr Reynolds, W J Van de Ven, J Blomberg, J R Stephenson (1981)  Involvement of a high-molecular-weight polyprotein translational product of Snyder-Theilen Feline sarcoma virus in malignant transformation   J Virol 37: 2. 643-53  
Abstract: The previously described high-molecular-weight polyprotein major translational product of the Snyder-Theilen strain of feline sarcoma virus (FeSV) was shown to possess protein kinase activity with specificity for tyrosine acceptor sites. Cells transformed by Snyder-Theilen FeSV exhibited constitutively elevated levels of phosphotyrosine and a concomitant reduction in epidermal growth factor (EGF) binding sites. By endpoint cloning in microtiter plates, a number of transformation-defective (tf) mutants of the Snyder-Theilen strain of FeSV were isolated. Mink cells nonproductively infected by such mutants were morphologically nontransformed, failed to grow in soft agar, bound EGF as efficiently as control mink cells, and lacked rescuable transforming virus. Although the level of expression of the major viral polyprotein translational product in td mutant-infected clones was comparable to that of wild-type (wt) transformants, the polyprotein in mutant clones lacked detectable protein kinase activity and total cellular phosphotyrosine levels were not elevated significantly above control values. Of a large number of wt Snyder-Theilen FeSV-transformed mink cell clones isolated, the majority were found to revert to a nontransformed morphology upon continuous passage in cell culture. Such nontransformed variants, as well as a Gardner FeSV-transformed mink cell revertant, lacked detectable polyprotein expression and exhibited levels of phosphotyrosine and EGF binding similar to those of control mink cells. These findings provide strong evidence favoring the involvement of the Snyder-Theilen FeSV-encoded high-molecular-weight polyprotein and its associated tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity in transformation.
Notes: N01-CO-75380/CO/United States NCI xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;United states
F H W J van de Ven, Jr Reynolds, J Blomberg, J R Stephenson (1980)  Identification of tryptic peptides unique to a 110,000-molecular weight polyprotein encoded by the T-8 isolate of murine leukemia virus   J Exp Med 152: 6. 1762-78  
Abstract: Mink cells nonproductively-infected with the weakly-transforming T-8 isolate of murine leukemia virus (MuLV) express a 110,000 mol wt polyprotein designated T-8 P110. By immunoprecipitation analysis, T-8 P110 is shown to contain AKR-MuLV amino terminal gag gene-specific components (p15, p12) but to lack p30, p10, gp70, and p15(E) antigenic determinants. These observations are further substantiated by tryptic peptide analysis indicating T-8 P110 to share approximately six lysine-containing tryptic peptides with AKR-MuLV Pr65gag, and none with AKr-MuLV Pr82env. Furthermore, of seven methionine-containing T-8 P110 tryptic peptides, at least four can be conclusively shown not to be present in either AKr-MuLV Pr180gag/pol or Pr82env. A clonal mink cell line nonproductively infected by T-8, and expressing high levels of P110, although not morphologically transformed, is shown to lack elevated levels of tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity and reduction of epidermal growth factor binding sites characteristic of cells transformed by many other RNA-transforming viruses. These findings argue either that the T-8 viral genome contains acquired cellular sequences encoding a portion of P110, or that T-8 P110 represents an inphase deletion of AKR-MuLV Pr180gag/pol with extensive posttranlational modification and that an as yet unidentified protein is responsible for T-8 associated transformation.
Notes: N01-CO-75380/CO/United States NCI xD;Journal Article xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;United states
F H J Blomberg, Jr Reynolds, W J Van de Ven, J R Stephenson (1980)  Abelson murine leukaemia virus transformation involves loss of epidermal growth factor-binding sites   Nature 286: 5772. 504-7  
Abstract: Malignant transformation by mammalian RNA sarcoma viruses has previously been shown to involve a reduction in receptor sites for a well characterized 6,000-molecular weight (MW) growth-promoting substance, designated epidermal growth factor (EGF). Although Abelson murine leukaemia virus (AbLV) resembles sarcoma viruses in its ability to transform embryo fibroblasts in cell culture, AbLV induces a rapid B-cell lymphoid leukaemia rather than fibrosarcomas in vivo. The major translational product of AbLV is a highly phosphorylated polyprotein of MW 120,000 which exhibits an associated tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity and probable transforming function. We show here that AbLV transformation resembles transformation by RNA sarcoma viruses with respect to the abolition of EGF-binding sites. EGF binding is restored to control levels following loss of polyprotein expression in morphological revertants of AbLV-transformed clones and remains uninfluenced in cell lines infected with transformation-defective (td) AbLV mutants encoding polyproteins deficient in protein kinase activity. These findings indicate that AbLV transformation involves a polyprotein-associated, tyrosine-specific protein kinase activity which mediates its effect through a mechanism resulting directly or indirectly in the abolition of EGF-binding sites.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. xD;England
J Blomberg (1979)  Studies on the attachment of herpes simplex virus. Effect of trypsin treatment   Arch Virol 61: 3. 201-6  
Abstract: The adsorption of herpes simplex virus (HSV) to monolayers of trypsinized and mock-treated GMK-AH1 cells was studied by means of a microplaque technique. Plaque formation was nearly abolished for c:a 20 minutes and full sensitivity regained at 6--8 hours post trypsinization. The return of sensitivity to HSV was inhibited by cycloheximide and incubation at 4 degrees C. The sum of PFU in the supernatant and PFU successe modifying agents were without effect on the adsorption of HSV.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Austria
S Olofsson, J Blomberg (1977)  Studies on glycopeptides of Herpes simplex virus infected cells   Arch Virol 55: 4. 293-304  
Abstract: Trypsinates from HSV infected cells, radioactively labeled with glucosamine and galactose were further digested by pronase. The digests were subjected to gel filtration, and it was shown that some of the eluted material consisted of saccharides, highly devoid of residual peptide. This material eluted between linear dextran markers of 19,000 and 3000 daltons. Only slight differences between uninfected and HSV infected cells in galactose and glucosamine derived radioactivity profiles of the chromatograms were detected. High molecular weight glucosamine labeled material, present in digest from uninfected cells, was not detectable in digests from HSV infected cells. The concanavalin A adsorbability of eluted fractions was tested. Changes in the relative adsorbability between materials from HSV and uninfected cells were present, especially for the glucosamine labeled saccharides.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;In Vitro xD;Journal Article xD;Austria
L Grillner, J Blomberg (1976)  Hemolysis-in-gel and neutralization tests for determination of antibodies to mumps virus   J Clin Microbiol 4: 1. 11-5  
Abstract: A hemolysis-in-gel test for the demonstration of antibodies to mumps virus is described. The results were compared with those of neutralization tests using a modified microtechnique. In the neutralization test viral replication was demonstrated by the hemadsorption of guinea pig erythrocytes, the visibility of which could be further enhanced by the use of o-tolidine. Good correlation was found between the results of the two techniques. The hemolysis-in-gel test was simple to perform, rapid, sensitive, and shown to be a useful test for the demonstration of mumps antibodies.
Notes: Comparative Study xD;Journal Article xD;United states
J Blomberg, E Bjorck, S Olofsson, G Berg, E Lycke (1976)  Purification of virions and nucleocapsids of herpes simplex virus by means of metrizamide and sodium metrizoate gradients   Arch Virol 50: 4. 271-8  
Abstract: The generation of density gradients for ultracentrifuging by freezing and thawing was applied to formation of linear density gradients with sodium metrizoate and metrizamide. Using these gradient materials simple and rapid methods for purification of virions and nucleocapsids of herpes virus were elaborated. Using metrizamide the recovery of infectivity was 10-30 per cent, and the purification of virions measured as reduction of host protein was 1700 times. Using metrizoate, the recovery of nucleocapsids was 30-60 per cent and the purification from host DNA and protein was 900 and 1700 times, respectively.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Austria
A Vahlne, J Blomberg, S Olofsson, E Lycke (1975)  Subtyping of herpes simplex virus   Acta Pathol Microbiol Scand [B] 83: 5. 506-12  
Abstract: A number of different techniques to be used for the subtyping of herpes simplex virus (HSV) strains were studied. The strains were inoculated on chorio-allantoic membranes of embryonated eggs and on green monkey kidney (GMK) cells in order that the morphology of plaques produced might be observed. They were classified serologically by determination of K-values and inoculated intracerebrally in mice in order that their pathogenicity for mice might be observed. The inhibitory effect of high concentrations of thymidine on the multiplication of the strains in GMK cells cultures and the heat-stability of the virus-induced thymidine kinases were investigated. Rates of inactivation of the strains in the presence of AgNO3 were compared and, finally, the association of focal liver necrosis in intraperitoneally inoculated mice with the results of the serological typing was observed. The results suggested that the liver necrosis test was simple as well as accurate and useful as a screening typing-test. Reliable results were also obtained serologically and by the method demonstrating differences in the heat-stability of viral thymidine kinase. Using the other methods studied, difficulties to obtain clear-cut or reproducible typing results were encountered.
Notes: Journal Article xD;Denmark
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