Germ-line transmitted, chromosomally integrated HHV-6 and classical Hodgkin lymphoma.
ABSTRACT: A unique feature of both human herpesvirus 6A and B (HHV-6A and B) among human herpesviruses is their ability to integrate into chromosomal telomeres. In some individuals integrated viral genomes are present in the germ-line and result in the vertical transmission of HHV-6; however, little is known about the disease associations of germ-line transmitted, chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6). Recent publications suggest that HHV-6 is associated with classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL). Here we examine the prevalence of ciHHV-6 in 936 cases of cHL and 563 controls by screening with a duplex TaqMan assay and confirming with droplet digital PCR. ciHHV-6 was detected in 10/563 (1.8%) controls and in all but one individual the virus was HHV-6B. Amongst cases 16/936 (1.7%) harboured ciHHV-6, thus demonstrating no association between ciHHV-6 and risk of cHL.
Project description:The genomes of human herpesvirus 6A (HHV-6A) and HHV-6B have the capacity to integrate into telomeres, the essential capping structures of chromosomes that play roles in cancer and ageing. About 1% of people worldwide are carriers of chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6), which is inherited as a genetic trait. Understanding the consequences of integration for the evolution of the viral genome, for the telomere, and for the risk of disease associated with carrier status is hampered by a lack of knowledge about ciHHV-6 genomes. Here, we report an analysis of 28 ciHHV-6 genomes and show that they are significantly divergent from the few modern nonintegrated HHV-6 strains for which complete sequences are currently available. In addition, ciHHV-6B genomes in Europeans are more closely related to each other than to ciHHV-6B genomes from China and Pakistan, suggesting regional variation of the trait. Remarkably, at least one group of European ciHHV-6B carriers has inherited the same ciHHV-6B genome, integrated in the same telomere allele, from a common ancestor estimated to have existed 24,500 ± 10,600 years ago. Despite the antiquity of some, and possibly most, germ line HHV-6 integrations, the majority of ciHHV-6B (95%) and ciHHV-6A (72%) genomes contain a full set of intact viral genes and therefore appear to have the capacity for viral gene expression and full reactivation.IMPORTANCE Inheritance of HHV-6A or HHV-6B integrated into a telomere occurs at a low frequency in most populations studied to date, but its characteristics are poorly understood. However, stratification of ciHHV-6 carriers in modern populations due to common ancestry is an important consideration for genome-wide association studies that aim to identify disease risks for these people. Here, we present full sequence analysis of 28 ciHHV-6 genomes and show that ciHHV-6B in many carriers with European ancestry most likely originated from ancient integration events in a small number of ancestors. We propose that ancient ancestral origins for ciHHV-6A and ciHHV-6B are also likely in other populations. Moreover, despite their antiquity, all of the ciHHV-6 genomes appear to retain the capacity to express viral genes, and most are predicted to be capable of full viral reactivation. These discoveries represent potentially important considerations in immunocompromised patients, in particular in organ transplantation and in stem cell therapy.
Project description:Human herpesvirus-6A and B (HHV-6A, HHV-6B) have recently defined endogenous genomes, resulting from integration into the germline: chromosomally-integrated "CiHHV-6A/B". These affect approximately 1.0% of human populations, giving potential for virus gene expression in every cell. We previously showed that CiHHV-6A was more divergent than CiHHV-6B by examining four genes in 44 European CiHHV-6A/B cardiac/haematology patients. There was evidence for gene expression/reactivation, implying functional non-defective genomes. To further define the relationship between HHV-6A and CiHHV-6A we used next-generation sequencing to characterize genomes from three CiHHV-6A cardiac patients. Comparisons to known exogenous HHV-6A showed CiHHV-6A genomes formed a separate clade; including all 85 non-interrupted genes and necessary cis-acting signals for reactivation as infectious virus. Greater single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) density was defined in 16 genes and the direct repeats (DR) terminal regions. Using these SNPs, deep sequencing analyses demonstrated superinfection with exogenous HHV-6A in two of the CiHHV-6A patients with recurrent cardiac disease. Characterisation of the integration sites in twelve patients identified the human chromosome 17p subtelomere as a prevalent site, which had specific repeat structures and phylogenetically related CiHHV-6A coding sequences indicating common ancestral origins. Overall CiHHV-6A genomes were similar, but distinct from known exogenous HHV-6A virus, and have the capacity to reactivate as emerging virus infections.
Project description:Chromosomally integrated human herpesvirus 6 (ciHHV-6) is a condition in which the complete HHV-6 genome is integrated into the host germ line genome and is vertically transmitted in a Mendelian manner. The condition is found in less than 1% of controls in the USA and UK, but has been found at a somewhat higher prevalence in transplant recipients and other patient populations in several small studies. HHV-6 levels in whole blood that exceed 5.5 log10 copies/ml are strongly suggestive of ciHHV-6. Monitoring DNA load in plasma and serum is unreliable, both for identifying and for monitoring subjects with ciHHV-6 due to cell lysis and release of cellular DNA. High HHV-6 DNA loads associated with ciHHV-6 can lead to erroneous diagnosis of active infection. Transplant recipients with ciHHV-6 may be at increased risk for bacterial infection and graft rejection. ciHHV-6 can be induced to a state of active viral replication in vitro. It is not known whether ciHHV-6 individuals are put at clinical risk by the use of drugs that have been associated with HHV-6 reactivation in vivo or in vitro. Nonetheless, we urge careful observation when use of such drugs is indicated in individuals known to have ciHHV-6. Little is known about whether individuals with ciHHV-6 develop immune tolerance for viral proteins. Further research is needed to determine the role of ciHHV-6 in disease.
Project description:Human herpesvirus -6A and 6B (HHV-6A/B) can integrate their genomes into the telomeres of human chromosomes. Viral integration can occur in several cell types, including germinal cells, resulting in individuals that harbor the viral genome in every cell of their body. The integrated genome is efficiently silenced but can sporadically reactivate resulting in various clinical symptoms. To date, the integration mechanism and the subsequent silencing of HHV-6A/B genes remains poorly understood. Here we investigate the genome-wide chromatin contacts of the integrated HHV-6A in latently-infected cells. We show that HHV-6A becomes transcriptionally silent upon infection of these cells over the course of seven days. In addition, we established an HHV-6-specific 4C-seq approach, revealing that the HHV-6A 3D interactome is associated with quiescent chromatin states in cells harboring integrated virus. Furthermore, we observed that the majority of virus chromatin interactions occur toward the distal ends of specific human chromosomes. Exploiting this finding, we established a 4C-seq method that accurately detects the chromosomal integration sites. We further implement long-read minION sequencing in the 4C-seq assay and developed a method to identify HHV-6A/B integration sites in clinical samples.
Project description:More than 95% of the human population is infected with human herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) during early childhood and maintains latent HHV-6 genomes either in an extra-chromosomal form or as a chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (ciHHV-6). In addition, approximately 1% of humans are born with an inheritable form of ciHHV-6 integrated into the telomeres of chromosomes. Immunosuppression and stress conditions can reactivate latent HHV-6 replication, which is associated with clinical complications and even death. We have previously shown that Chlamydia trachomatis infection reactivates ciHHV-6 and induces the formation of extra-chromosomal viral DNA in ciHHV-6 cells. Here, we propose a model and provide experimental evidence for the mechanism of ciHHV-6 reactivation. Infection with Chlamydia induced a transient shortening of telomeric ends, which subsequently led to increased telomeric circle (t-circle) formation and incomplete reconstitution of circular viral genomes containing single viral direct repeat (DR). Correspondingly, short t-circles containing parts of the HHV-6 DR were detected in cells from individuals with genetically inherited ciHHV-6. Furthermore, telomere shortening induced in the absence of Chlamydia infection also caused circularization of ciHHV-6, supporting a t-circle based mechanism for ciHHV-6 reactivation.
Project description:Human herpesvirus-6A (HHV-6A) and 6B (HHV-6B) are two closely related betaherpesviruses that are associated with various diseases including seizures and encephalitis. The HHV-6A/B genomes have been shown to be present in an integrated state in the telomeres of latently infected cells. In addition, integration of HHV-6A/B in germ cells has resulted in individuals harboring this inherited chromosomally integrated HHV-6A/B (iciHHV-6) in every cell of their body. Until now, the viral transcriptome and the epigenetic modifications that contribute to the silencing of the integrated virus genome remain elusive. In the current study, we used a patient-derived iciHHV-6A cell line to assess the global viral gene expression profile by RNA-seq, and the chromatin profiles by MNase-seq and ChIP-seq analyses. In addition, we investigated an in vitro generated cell line (293-HHV-6A) that expresses GFP upon the addition of agents commonly used to induce herpesvirus reactivation such as TPA. No viral gene expression including miRNAs was detected from the HHV-6A genomes, indicating that the integrated virus is transcriptionally silent. Intriguingly, upon stimulation of the 293-HHV-6A cell line with TPA, only foreign promoters in the virus genome were activated, while all HHV-6A promoters remained completely silenced. The transcriptional silencing of latent HHV-6A was further supported by MNase-seq results, which demonstrate that the latent viral genome resides in a highly condensed nucleosome-associated state. We further explored the enrichment profiles of histone modifications via ChIP-seq analysis. Our results indicated that the HHV-6 genome is modestly enriched with the repressive histone marks H3K9me3/H3K27me3 and does not possess the active histone modifications H3K27ac/H3K4me3. Overall, these results indicate that HHV-6 genomes reside in a condensed chromatin state, providing insight into the epigenetic mechanisms associated with the silencing of the integrated HHV-6A genome.
Project description:Human herpesviruses 6-A and -B (HHV-6A, HHV-6B) are ubiquitous in human populations worldwide. These viruses have been associated with several diseases such as multiple sclerosis, Hodgkin's lymphoma or encephalitis. Despite of the need to understand the genetic diversity and geographic stratification of these viruses, the availability of complete viral sequences from different populations is still limited. Here, we present nine new inherited chromosomally integrated HHV-6 sequences from diverse geographical origin which were generated through target DNA enrichment on lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from healthy individuals. Integration with available HHV-6 sequences allowed the assessment of HHV-6A and -6B phylogeny, patterns of recombination and signatures of natural selection. Analysis of the intra-species variability showed differences between A and B diversity levels and revealed that the HHV-6B reference (Z29) is an uncommon sequence, suggesting the need for an alternative reference sequence. Signs of geographical variation are present and more defined in HHV-6A, while they appear partly masked by recombination in HHV-6B. Finally, we conducted a scan for signatures of selection in protein coding genes that yielded at least 6 genes (4 and 2 respectively for the A and B species) showing significant evidence for accelerated evolution, and 1 gene showing evidence of positive selection in HHV-6A.
Project description:Human betaherpesviruses 6A and 6B (HHV-6A and HHV-6B) are highly prevalent in human populations. The genomes of these viruses can be stably integrated at the telomeres of human chromosomes and be vertically transmitted (inherited chromosomally integrated HHV-6, iciHHV6). We reconstructed the population structure of HHV-6 and we show that HHV-6A genomes diverged less than HHV-6B genomes from the ancestral common HHV-6A/B population. Analysis of ancestry proportions indicated that HHV-6A exogenous viruses and iciHHV-6A derived most of their genomes from distinct ancestral sources. Conversely, exogenous viral and iciHHV-6B populations were similar in terms of ancestry components, with no evident geographic structuring. Most HHV-6B genomes sampled to date derive from viral populations that experienced considerable drift. However, a population of HHV-6 exogenous viruses, currently classified as HHV-6B and sampled in New York state, formed a separate cluster (NY cluster) and harbored a considerable portion of HHV-6A-like ancestry. Recombination detection methods identified these viruses as interspecies recombinants, but phylogenetic reconstruction indicated that the recombination signals are due to shared ancestry. In analogy to iciHHV-6A, NY cluster viruses have high nucleotide diversity and constant population size. We propose that HHV-6A sequences and the NY cluster population diverged from an ancestral HHV-6A-like population. A relatively recent bottleneck of the NY (or a related) population with subsequent expansion originated most HHV-6B genomes currently sampled. Our findings indicate that the distinction between HHV-6A and -6B is not as clear-cut as previously thought. More generally, epidemiological and clinical surveys would benefit from taking HHV-6 genetic diversity into account.
Project description:Human betaherpesviruses 6A and 6B (HHV-6A and HHV-6B) are highly prevalent in human populations. The genomes of these viruses can be stably integrated at the telomeres of human chromosomes and be vertically transmitted (inherited chromosomally integrated HHV-6A/HHV-6B, iciHHV-6A/iciHHV-6B). We reconstructed the population structures of HHV-6A and HHV-6B, showing that HHV-6A diverged less than HHV-6B genomes from the projected common ancestral population. Thus, HHV-6B genomes experienced stronger drift, as also supported by calculation of nucleotide diversity and Tajima's D. Analysis of ancestry proportions indicated that HHV-6A exogenous viruses and iciHHV-6A derived most of their genomes from distinct ancestral sources. Conversely, ancestry proportions were similar in exogenous HHV-6B viruses and iciHHV-6B. In line with previous indications, this suggests the distinct exogenous viral populations that originated iciHHV-6B in subjects with European and Asian ancestry are still causing infections in the corresponding geographic areas. Notably, for both iciHHV-6A and iciHHV-6B, we found that European and American sequences tend to have high proportions of ancestry from viral populations that experienced considerable drift, suggesting that they underwent one or more bottlenecks followed by population expansion. Finally, analysis of HHV-6B exogenous viruses sampled in Japan indicated that proportions of ancestry components of most of these viruses are different from the majority of those sampled in the USA. More generally, we show that, in both viral species, both integrated and exogenous viral genomes have different ancestry components, partially depending on geographic location. It would be extremely important to determine whether such differences account for the diversity of HHV-6A/HHV-6B-associated clinical symptoms and epidemiology. Also, the sequencing of additional exogenous and integrated viral genomes will be instrumental to confirm and expand our conclusions, which are based on a relatively small number of genomes, sequenced with variable quality, and with unequal sampling in terms of geographic origin.
Project description:Human herpesvirus-6 (HHV-6) exists in latent form either as a nuclear episome or integrated into human chromosomes in more than 90% of healthy individuals without causing clinical symptoms. Immunosuppression and stress conditions can reactivate HHV-6 replication, associated with clinical complications and even death. We have previously shown that co-infection of Chlamydia trachomatis and HHV-6 promotes chlamydial persistence and increases viral uptake in an in vitro cell culture model. Here we investigated C. trachomatis-induced HHV-6 activation in cell lines and fresh blood samples from patients having Chromosomally integrated HHV-6 (CiHHV-6). We observed activation of latent HHV-6 DNA replication in CiHHV-6 cell lines and fresh blood cells without formation of viral particles. Interestingly, we detected HHV-6 DNA in blood as well as cervical swabs from C. trachomatis-infected women. Low virus titers correlated with high C. trachomatis load and vice versa, demonstrating a potentially significant interaction of these pathogens in blood cells and in the cervix of infected patients. Our data suggest a thus far underestimated interference of HHV-6 and C. trachomatis with a likely impact on the disease outcome as consequence of co-infection.