What Causes The JC Virus?

Can the JC virus be cured?

Symptoms.

Reactivation of the JC virus might cause cells to die.

The virus may break down the protective coating of nerve cells, damaging the white matter of the brain.

PML is an aggressive, potentially fatal disease that infects the brain, and no cure is available at present..

Is the JC virus contagious?

JC virus is a small ubiquitous human DNA polyomavirus that causes asymptomatic primary infection in up to 86% of the general population. Seroprevalence of JC virus increases with age worldwide. JC virus is spread via the urine-oral route.

What does PML do to the brain?

Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) (1) is a neurological disorder characterized by destruction of cells that produce the myelin, an oily substance that helps protect nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, also known as central nervous system (CNS) white matter.

What are the first signs of PML?

These symptoms include:general weakness that steadily gets worse.clumsiness and balance issues.sensory loss.difficulty using your arms and legs.changes to vision.loss of language skills.facial drooping.personality changes.More items…•

What is PML caused by?

What causes PML? PML is caused by a human polyomavirus, the JC virus. The virus was named after the patient from whom the virus was initially cultivated, John Cunningham. Approximately 50% of the world’s population are infected with the virus by the time they reach age 20, although most remain asymptomatic4.

How common is JC virus?

The John Cunningham virus, known more commonly as the JC virus, is a very common virus in the United States. According to the World Journal of Neurosciences, between 70 and 90 percent of people in the world have the virus.

How do you know if you have the JC virus?

Tests can detect if you carry the JC virus. Your doctor might look at a sample of your tissue under a microscope or check your blood for signs that your body is fighting the infection. This is important to know in case you have a weakened immune system or if you take drugs that suppress your immune system.

What does BK virus stand for?

BK virus (BKV) belongs to the human Polyomaviridae, initially isolated from urine sample of a 29-year-old male patient with renal blockage and failure at 1971. BK virus is an abbreviation of the name of the first patient whom the virus was isolated from.

How is polyomavirus spread in humans?

Since most humans are infected with JCV and BKV, these data indicate that the ingestion of contaminated water or food could represent a possible portal of entrance of these viruses or polyomavirus DNA into the human population.

What does PML feel like?

The symptoms of PML are diverse, since they are related to the location and amount of damage in the brain, and may evolve over the course of several weeks to months. The most prominent symptoms are clumsiness; progressive weakness; and visual, speech, and sometimes personality changes.

Is PML reversible?

When PML results from reversible immunosuppression, as in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) who are receiving monoclonal antibodies, the immediate cessation of the offending agent is recommended.

Is MS caused by stress?

Exposure to stress has long been suspected as a factor that can aggravate MS. There are many studies showing that among people diagnosed with MS, stressful life events are associated with a significant increase in risk of MS exacerbation in the weeks or months following onset of the stressor.

How long can a person live with the JC virus?

It is caused by reactivation of the John Cunningham virus (JCV) and infection of glial cells. It is often fatal, with a median life expectancy of less than six months following onset of symptoms [1]. Reports of PML afflicting immunocompetent patients are extremely rare but not unknown.

What type of virus is JC virus?

Human polyomavirus 2, commonly referred to as the JC virus or John Cunningham virus, is a type of human polyomavirus (formerly known as papovavirus).

Can you recover from PML?

There is no cure for PML but one-year survival has increased from 10% to 50% in HIV-infected individuals treated with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART).

What does JC positive mean?

If the blood test finds JC virus (JCV positive), this indicates that you are at a higher risk of developing PML, although for most people the risk is still small.

Who gets PML?

PML is most common among individuals with HIV-1 infection / acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Studies estimate that prior to effective antiretroviral therapy, as many as 5 percent of persons infected with HIV-1 eventually develop PML that is an AIDS-defining illness.

How fast does PML progress?

Symptoms can progress quickly over weeks and include mental deterioration, vision loss, speech disturbances, lack of coordination, paralysis, and coma. Specific symptoms relate to the affected areas of the brain by PML. Seizures can occur in 1 out of 5 people. How is PML diagnosed?