Polyomaviruses shedding in stool of patients with hematological disorders: detection analysis and study of the non-coding control region’s genetic variability

Carla Prezioso, Marco Ciotti, Francisco Obregon, Donatella Ambroselli, Donatella Maria Rodio, Laura Cudillo, Javid Gaziev, Annamaria Mele, Angelo Nardi, Cartesio Favalli, William Arcese, Anna Teresa Palamara, Valeria Pietropaolo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fragmented data are available on the human polyomaviruses (HPyVs) prevalence in the gastrointestinal tract. Rearrangements in the non-coding control region (NCCR) of JCPyV and BKPyV have been extensively studied and correlated to clinical outcome; instead, little information is available for KIPyV, WUPyV and MCPyV NCCRs. To get insights into the role of HPyVs in the gastrointestinal tract, we investigated JCPyV, BKPyV, KIPyV, WUPyV and MCPyV distribution among hematological patients in concomitance with gastrointestinal symptoms. In addition, NCCRs and VP1 sequences were examined to characterize the strains circulating among the enrolled patients. DNA was extracted from 62 stool samples and qPCR was carried out to detect and quantify JCPyV, BKPyV, KIPyV, WUPyV and MCPyV genomes. Positive samples were subsequently amplified and sequenced for NCCR and VP1 regions. A phylogenetic tree was constructed aligning the obtained VP1 sequences to a set of reference sequences. qPCR revealed low viral loads for all HPyVs searched. Mono and co-infections were detected. A significant correlation was found between gastrointestinal complications and KIPyV infection. Archetype-like NCCRs were found for JCPyV and BKPyV, and a high degree of NCCRs stability was observed for KIPyV, WUPyV and MCPyV. Analysis of the VP1 sequences revealed a 99% identity with the VP1 reference sequences. The study adds important information on HPyVs prevalence and persistence in the gastrointestinal tract. Gastrointestinal signs were correlated with the presence of KIPyV, although definitive conclusions cannot be drawn. HPyVs NCCRs showed a high degree of sequence stability, suggesting that sequence rearrangements are rare in this anatomical site.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)845-854
Number of pages10
JournalMedical Microbiology and Immunology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2019


  • Gastrointestinal tract
  • Hematological patients
  • HPyVs
  • NCCR/VP1
  • Phylogenetic analysis
  • Stool samples

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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