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Cytomegalovirus and Varicella–Zoster Virus Vaccines

Molecular Biology of Specific Diseases

  1. Lawrence A. Hunt

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/3527600906.mcb.200300038

Reviews in Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine

Reviews in Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine

How to Cite

Hunt, L. A. 2006. Cytomegalovirus and Varicella–Zoster Virus Vaccines. Reviews in Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine. .

Author Information

  1. University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006


Classical live-attenuated vaccines were developed several decades ago for two clinically important human herpesviruses, varicella-zoster virus and human cytomegalovirus. The varicella vaccine has been licensed for immunization of normal children in Japan, Korea, and the United States for a number of years. In contrast, live-attenuated cytomegalovirus has only been tested in a limited number of studies of organ transplant recipients and healthy adult volunteers, and has not yet been considered for licensure. A number of experimental cytomegalovirus vaccines have been developed using molecular biology and recombinant DNA technology, because of theoretical concerns about the long-term safety and effectiveness of the currently available live cytomegalovirus vaccines. Some of the same techniques are also being applied to varicella-zoster virus to develop improved vaccines that could supplement or replace the current varicella vaccine or provide protection against viral reactivation and zoster. The major emphasis of high-technology vaccine development has been on the viral glycoproteins because they are the targets of neutralizing antibody, and includes both recombinant protein subunit vaccines and live-recombinant virus vaccines. Other virion and nonstructural viral proteins are also being considered as immunogens for cytotoxic T-cell responses.


  • Adjuvant;
  • Antigen;
  • Live Vaccine;
  • Neutralizing Antibody;
  • Seropositive versus Seronegative;
  • Structural versus Nonstructural Protein;
  • Subunit Vaccine;
  • Virion