Polyomaviruses and Disease

  • Jaime M. Kean
  • Robert L. Garcea

The first recognized member of the Polyomaviridae family, murine polyomavirus, was isolated in 1953 by Ludwig Gross while studying leukemia development in mice. Simian vacuolating virus (SV40) was isolated in 1960 by Sweet and Hilleman from primary monkey kidney cell cultures used to cultivate both the Salk and Sabin poliovirus vaccines (Sweet and Hilleman 1960). The human polyomaviruses, BKV and JCV, were discovered in 1971 and are ubiquitous in humans, infecting over 80% of the population by adulthood. Polyomaviruses express T-antigen proteins that circumvent cell cycle controls in order to replicate efficiently. The ability of polyomaviruses to promote cell proliferation and establish persistent infections in their hosts has implicated them in malignancy. Here we will review diseases caused by the polyomaviruses in animals and compare to those in man in order to identify general features of their pathobiology.

Animal Polyomaviruses

Polyomaviruses have been identified in many hosts...


Merkel Cell Carcinoma Mouse Mammary Tumor Virus Hemorrhagic Cystitis SV40 Infection Umbilical Cord Blood Serum 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors would like to acknowledge institutions providing financial support. Robert L. Garcea was supported by NIH/NCI grant CA37667 and Jaime M. Kean by NIH/NIAID grant T32 AI52066.


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© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center,PediatricsDenverUSA

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