Servizio Comunitario di Informazione in materia di Ricerca e Sviluppo - CORDIS

Antiviral activity of RA on Human Herpes Virus-8 (HHV-8) infection and reactivation

It was shown that retinoids have anti-HHV-8 activity and, in particular, new retinoid compounds with stronger antiviral activity on HHV-8 were identified.

The compounds specifically inhibited viral promoters, both during the early and the late phases of infection in all the cell systems tested, and resulted in significant reductions of viral replication and release of progeny virus.

The inhibition of viral replication displayed by retinoids in endothelial cells, primary target of in vivo HHV-8-associated neoplastic transformation in the course of Kaposi's Sarcoma (KS), was reflected by fact that endothelial cells did not develop the characteristic changes associated to HHV-8 infection and neoplastic activity, i.e. spindle morphology and tube formation in Matrigel.

Therefore, specific retinoids might be good candidates for the development of antiviral drugs and for antineoplastic therapy of HHV-8 associated lesions.

Reported by

Section of Microbiology
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