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Low frequency of BK virus in prostatic adenocarcinomas

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Lau SK, Lacey SF, Chen YY, Chen WG, Weiss LM. Low frequency of BK virus in prostatic adenocarcinomas. APMIS 2007;115:743–9.

BK virus (BKV) exhibits many oncogenic properties and has been associated with a variety of tumors in humans. BKV has not been well studied in the context of prostate neoplasia; however, an association of BKV with prostatic adenocarcinoma has been suggested based on the detection of viral DNA sequences and expression of viral proteins in clinical samples. To further investigate the reported association of BKV with prostatic adenocarcinoma and the potential role of the virus in prostate tumorigenesis, 30 cases of adenocarcinoma of the prostate were analyzed for evidence of BKV infection by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. In situ hybridization analysis detected BKV DNA in 2 of 30 (7%) prostatic adenocarcinomas, with positive signals focally identified in less than 1% of the neoplastic cells in both cases. However, none of the tumors evaluated demonstrated evidence of BKV large tumor antigen expression by immunohistochemistry. Among prostatic adenocarcinomas that showed no evidence of BKV infection, BKV DNA was focally observed in the adjacent non-neoplastic prostate tissue in four cases by in situ hybridization in the absence of BKV large tumor antigen immunoreactivity. The findings of the present study indicate rare cases of prostatic adenocarcinoma may be associated with BKV infection. However, lack of localization of BKV to a large population of the neoplastic cells and absence of BKV large tumor antigen expression suggest that the virus does not play a role in the pathogenesis of prostate cancer.

Keywords: BK virus; large tumor antigen; prostate carcinoma

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Laboratory of Vaccine Research, Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, California, United States 2: Department of Pathology and

Publication date: 2007-06-01

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