Arthritis in a human T lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) carrier
Infections may play an important role in the development of autoimmune diseases, in which abnormal immune cells and immune proteins called autoantibodies attack body tissues and cell elements such as the nucleus. Viruses that infect lymphocytes, a type of immune cell, may be specifically involved in triggering autoimmune conditions. The human T lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) has been associated with adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma, a type of cancer. HTLV-I specifically infects T helper cells, a type of immune cell. Arthritis, or inflammation of the joints, is a symptom of adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma and infection with HTLV-I. Arthritis associated with HTLV-I infection is similar to rheumatoid arthritis, an inflammatory joint disease. HTLV-I-related arthritis may serve as a model of virus-associated autoimmune disease. A case is described of a 57-year-old woman with arthritis associated with HTLV-I infection. Antibodies to the virus were detected in her blood and synovial (joint) fluids. Abnormal lymphocytes were also detected in the synovial fluids and tissue of the affected knee joint, indicating the activation of HTLV-I-infected lymphocytes. HTLV-I antigens, or elements of the virus that can activate an immune response, were detected in lymphocytes from the synovial fluid. These findings suggest that HTLV-I may have a role in activating inflammatory processes in the joint. (Consumer Summary produced by Reliance Medical Information, Inc.)
Publication Name: Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases
HAM/TSP: recent perspectives in Japan
A new theory may explain the mechanism by which human T-cell lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) affects various organs. HTLV-I is the cause of HTLV-I-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP), which is characterized by muscle weakness, spasticity, and bladder dysfunction. However, the virus also attacks other systems besides the central nervous system. This could be explained by the bystander damage mechanism, which involves viral reproduction in infected T cells and the proliferation of healthy T cells in response.
Publication Name: Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes and Human Retrovirology
Molecular pathologic analysis of the tonsil in HTLV-I-infected individuals
The tonsils can become infected with HTLV-I just as other lymphoid organs can, according to a study of 117 patients. HTLV-I is a virus that has been linked to adult T-cell leukemia/lymphoma and tropical spastic paraparesis.
Publication Name: Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (1999)
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