HHV-6 is a DNA virus belonging to the Herpesviridae family. Most people acquire Human Herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) early in life where it usually remains in a latent state for the lifetime of the host. However, viral reactivation can occur at any time and cause serious complications in cases of transplantation and immune suppression.
Immunohistochemical staining of tissues (IHC) is useful when analyzing tissue samples for active herpesvirus infections. The detection of HHV-6 late viral protein expression in tissues is definitive proof of active viral infection. Read more information on how IHC can be utilized in Transplant and Infertility:
Chromosomally Integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6)
Chromosomal Integration of HHV-6 (ciHHV-6) occurs in 0.5-2% of the population. The presence of the viral genome integrated into all body cells can confound diagnostic interpretation of HHV-6 DNA present in the blood, leading to a misdiagnosis of HHV-6 reactivation and unnecessary anti-viral treatment. Read more information on ci-HHV-6:
HHV-6 PCR DNA — Quantitative Analysis
Measuring the viral DNA in the blood is the standard method used to determine HHV-6 reactivation and likelihood of ci-HHV-6. Coppe Laboratories offers quantitative HHV-6 testing through blood, plasma, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). For confirmed ci-HHV-6 status, PCR testing on hair follicles or nail clippings is recommended. For confirmed active HHV-6 infection in tissue, HHV-6 Immunohistochemistry is recommended.