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New human retrovirus.

New human retrovirus

Scientists have discovered another human retrovirus related to--but distinct from--those already associated with AIDS and certain cancers. Italian researchers at the University of Rome and the University of L'Aquila found the virus in seven patients with a relatively rare form of lymphoma cancer called mycosis fungoides, after first isolating it from a cell line derived from another mycosis fungoides patient. Tentatively called HTLV-V in their report in the Dec. 11 SCIENCE, the virus joins other members of the HTLV (human T-lymphotrophic viruses) retrovirus family, all identified since 1980. The previously described HTLV viruses include the AIDS virus (HIV-1), as well as HTLV-I and HTLV-II, which apparently can cause some leukemias and lymphomas. A fourth HTLV virus, now known as HIV-2, is thought by researchers to also cause AIDS or an AIDS-like syndrome.

The new virus differs from the other two "cancer' retroviruses in that the cancer cells from HTLV-V infected patients do not have two specific surface receptors found on cancer cells from patients infected with HTLV-I and -II, say the authors. They also report that the wife of one patient had antibodies against HTLV-V, suggesting possible sexual transmission of the virus.
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Title Annotation:HTLV-V
Publication:Science News
Date:Dec 19, 1987
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