Xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus is not found in peripheral blood cells from treatment-naive human immunodeficiency virus-positive patients


Corresponding author: F. Maggi, Virology Unit, Pisa University Hospital, Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Pisana, Via San Zeno, 35–37, 56127 Pisa, Italy
E-mail: fabrizio.maggi63@gmail.com


Clin Microbiol Infect 2012; 18: 184–188


The human pathogen xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus (XMRV) has been tentatively associated with prostate cancer and chronic fatigue syndrome. Unfortunately, subsequent studies failed to identify the virus in various clinical settings. To determine whether XMRV circulates in humans and the relationship with its host, we searched for the virus in 124 human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients who might have been exposed to XMRV, might be prone to infection as a result of progressive immunodeficiency, and had not yet been treated with antiretroviral drugs. Using nested PCR and single-step TaqMan real-time PCR, both designed on the XMRV gag gene, we could not find any positive samples. These findings add to the growing amount of scepticism regarding XMRV.