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The significance of estimating the prevalence of HHV-6 in cancer patients does not actually get its importance from morbidity of the disease itself but from further interference of the outcome in bone marrow transplant patients; where it may be associated with serious life threatening complications. Thus, screening of patients with hematological malignancies for HHV-6 might be considered mandatory. The aim of this study was to evaluate a possible association between Human Herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) infection and acute leukemia in adults after receiving chemotherapy treatment for acute leukemia. All of the 63 studied adult patients with newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) were subjected to history taking with emphasis on history of fever, symptoms of infection or bleeding manifestations. Complete clinical examination for the presence of organomegaly, lymphadenopathy and signs of infection. Routine laboratory investigations including complete blood count, liver and renal functions tests. Peripheral blood samples (Whole blood specimens) were collected from all patients for quantitative determination of HHV6 viral load by Taqman probe technique at day 0 and day 100 of induction chemotherapy. The results argued against an etiological relationship between HHV-6 infection and the genesis of acute leukemia in adults, however, it supports the hypothesis of viral latency and the possibility of virus reactivation in immunocompromised hosts. The possible presence of HHV-6 as an associated or a putative causative agent in leukemia should however be considered. Several studies were conducted on pediatric patients, on the contrary, few studies were conducted on adult patients which necessitates further studies to be conducted on adults.
Radwa H Ghoraba a Pharmacist, graduated from Faculty of Pharmacy and Drug Manufacturing, Pharos University 2012, Alexandria, Egypt. She has a Master’s degree in Diagnostic and Molecular Microbiology, Medical Research Institute, Alexandria University 2017, Egypt.
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