Gliomas are the most common brain tumors and include a variety of histologic types and grades of malignancy. They arise from glial cells and represent approximately 70% of the primary brain tumors. According to the criteria of the World Health Organization (WHO), the majority of gliomas can be classified into four grades of malignancy (I-IV). Virus infection, especially by DNA viruses and retroviruses, which may cause insertion of viral DNA sequences into the host genome, often triggers the host defense mechanisms. Particularly, the DNA methylation machinery can be activated to cause the methylation of foreign movable viral sequences and, therefore, silence viral gene expression. Several studies have shown the presence of Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV) in glioblastoma, suggesting that the virus may participate in tumor pathogenesis. But this relationship is controversial because many other studies did not detect HCMV in these tumors. This study aims to detect the presence of HCMV in several samples of human glioma (94 formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded samples and 28 snap-frozen samples) by different sensitive techniques. We have been unable to detect HCMV DNA and proteins in glioma samples. Therefore, arguments used so far to conclude that HCMV is an oncomodulator virus in gliomas must be, in our view, seriously reconsidered.
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© 2017 The Author(s).