Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Viral reactivation a likely link between stress and heart disease

Date:
January 22, 2013
Source:
Ohio State University
Summary:
A new study could provide the link that scientists have been looking for to confirm that reactivation of a latent herpes virus is a cause of some heart problems.

A new study could provide the link that scientists have been looking for to confirm that reactivation of a latent herpes virus is a cause of some heart problems.

Looking at blood samples from 299 heart patients, researchers at Ohio State University found that those who had suffered a heart attack were the most likely to have inflammatory proteins circulating in their blood compared to patients with less acute symptoms. And having more of one of these proteins in the blood was linked to the presence of antibodies that signal a latent Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) reactivation.

To date, these relationships have been hard to find because scientists have been unable to detect evidence of a virus in diseased areas of the cardiovascular system.

In this study, however, the researchers instead looked for antibodies against a protein that can be produced even when only partial or incomplete reactivation of Epstein-Barr EBV occurs. And when this antibody was detected, it was associated with immune system malfunctions connected to inflammation -- a known risk factor for heart disease.

Identifying a solid link between a reactivated virus and heart disease is important because of the prevalence of EBV, a human herpes virus that causes infectious mononucleosis and several different types of tumors. An estimated 95 percent of Americans have been infected with the virus by adulthood, and once a person is infected, the virus remains dormant in the body. It can be reactivated without causing symptoms of illness, but reactivation has potential to create chaos in the immune system.

Stress is a known predictor of reactivation of EBV, meaning virus reactivation could be a mechanism by which stress leads to chronic inflammation and eventually cardiovascular diseases.

"In the big picture, this may help clarify the role these viruses play in heart disease," said co-author Ron Glaser, director of Ohio State's Institute for Behavioral Medicine Institute (IBMR) and professor of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics. "And it makes sense, because we know that some viral proteins can induce inflammation, affecting the lining of blood vessels, so that inflammation is in the right place to function as a significant risk factor for heart disease."

The research is published in the online journal PLOS ONE.

The patients whose blood was sampled for the study were undergoing angioplasty to clear narrow arteries. Researchers tested their blood for the presence of numerous cytokines -- proteins that signal the presence of inflammation -- as well as for antibody to an EBV encoded viral protein called dUTPase. This protein is produced early in the process of viral reactivation, and may be present even if signs of the virus itself cannot be detected.

Co-author Marshall Williams, professor of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics, uses a highly sensitive method to detect these antibodies, and hopes to develop an equally effective technique that could be put to use in clinical laboratories.

Patients who had had acute myocardial infarction -- a heart attack -- were the most likely to have the highest measures of two cytokines, interleukin-6 (IL-6) and intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (ICAM-1) in their blood compared to patients whose main symptom was chest pain.

Researchers also identified a strong relationship between circulating concentrations of ICAM-1 and detectable antibodies to EBV dUTPase. In fact, the highest values of ICAM-1 were found in patients who had had a heart attack and were positive for the dUTPase protein. A similar trend was seen with IL-6, but the finding could have been attributed to chance.

"This study provides the essential clinical corroboration of this mechanism showing enhanced levels of proinflammatory proteins in the blood of patients with acute coronary events and detectable levels of the EBV-related protein," said Philip Binkley, professor of cardiovascular medicine and epidemiology at Ohio State and a lead author of the study.

Additional co-authors on this work include Glen Cooke and Amanda Lesinski of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine; Min Chen and Bryon Laskowski of the IBMR; James Waldman of the Department of Pathology; and Maria-Eugenia Ariza and Deborah Knight of the Department of Molecular Virology, Immunology and Medical Genetics. Co-author Mackenzie Taylor, Binkley and Cooke also are investigators in the Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Ohio State University. The original article was written by Emily Caldwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Philip F. Binkley, Glen E. Cooke, Amanda Lesinski, Mackenzie Taylor, Min Chen, Bryon Laskowski, W. James Waldman, Maria E. Ariza, Marshall V. Williams, Deborah A. Knight, Ronald Glaser. Evidence for the Role of Epstein Barr Virus Infections in the Pathogenesis of Acute Coronary Events. PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (1): e54008 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054008

Cite This Page:

Ohio State University. "Viral reactivation a likely link between stress and heart disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130122162331.htm>.
Ohio State University. (2013, January 22). Viral reactivation a likely link between stress and heart disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130122162331.htm
Ohio State University. "Viral reactivation a likely link between stress and heart disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130122162331.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins