Evidence for enteroviral persistence in humans

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We have sought evidence of enteroviral persistence in humans. Eight
individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) were positive
for enteroviral sequences, detected by PCR in two serum
samples taken at least 5 months apart. The nucleotide sequence
of the 5' non-translated region (bases 174-423) was
determined for each amplicon. Four individuals had virtually
identical nucleotide sequences ( > 97%) in both samples. The
sequence pairs also each had a unique shared pattern
indicating that the virus had persisted. In one individual
(HO), it was clear that there had been infection with two
different enteroviruses. In the remaining three individuals,
the lack of unique shared features suggested that
re-infection had occurred, rather than persistence. With the
exception of HO, the sequences fell into a subgroup that is
related to the Coxsackie B-like viruses.

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