HHV-6 infection of tonsils and adenoids in children with hypertrophy and upper airway recurrent infections

Manola Comar, Domenico Grasso, Gianna dal Molin, Elisabetta Zocconi, Cesare Campello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objective: Human herpes virus 6 (HHV-6), the agent of a self-limiting exanthematic disease in childhood, persists in a silent state in the secondary lymphoid organs and the reactivation is characterized by HHV-6-induced inflammatory cytokines. This study investigates the possible etiological role of HHV-6 in children affected by tonsil and adenoid hypertrophy. Methods: 55 tonsils, 80 adenoids fresh tissues and 74 blood samples were collected from 80 children (mean age 4.8 years, 43.5% female) undergoing elective tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy for tissue hypertrophy. Moreover, patients with 6 cells suggesting a latent/persistent phase of infection. Conclusion: These results reinforce the role of the secondary lymphoid organs as an important reservoir for HHV-6B. Nevertheless, infection of lymphoid cells, sustained by a low level of replication, could be sufficient to increase the local injury through an autologous mechanism of inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-49
Number of pages3
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010



  • Adenoids
  • Children
  • HHV-6
  • Hypertrophy
  • Tonsils

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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