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Free Content Corneal epithelial changes due to adenovirus type 8 infection: A non-contact photomicrographic in vivo study in the human cornea

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To investigate corneal epithelial changes in human adenovirus type 8 (Ad8) infection, and compare them with herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1) changes.

Material and method:

12 patients with Ad8 infection: in 10 verified by tissue culture, in 2 clinically. The corneae were photographed by non-contact photomicrography.


Within the first days the epithelium showed multiple elevations measuring about 20–30 μm in diameter, and from about day 5 large numbers of scattered subsurficial abnormal cells. At the end of the first week larger (about 150–200 μm in diameter) epithelial foci started to appear. No focal ulcerative changes were observed.


The subsequent stages of Ad8 cytopathic effect are difficult to discern. The primary virus target seems to be the deeper epithelial layers. The damaged cells are probably successively transported toward the surface and desquamated. The etiology of larger focal changes is unclear. The presence (HSV1) or absence (Ad8) of ulcerative changes differentiates these two infections.

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Keywords: adenovirus; cornea; epithelium; herpes simplex virus; human

Document Type: Editorial

Affiliations: Department of Ophthalmology, Malmö University Hospital, Sweden

Publication date: 2000-02-01

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