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Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), the largest known human herpesvirus, is a major cause of disease in individuals whose immune systems are compromised or immature and is the commonest infective cause of congenital damage to the central nervous system. Similarly, it can also be life-threatening in the context of organ or bone marrow transplant or advanced HIV infection.

Unlike many other viruses, HCMV is never cleared after primary infection but persists for the life time of the host. In part, this is due to the profound ability of HCMV to avoid the host’s immune response.

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Selected Publications

Alveolar Macrophages Isolated Directly From Human Cytomegalovirus (HCMV)-Seropositive Individuals Are Sites of HCMV Reactivation In Vivo. Poole E, Juss JK, Krishna B, Herre J, Chilvers ER, Sinclair J. J Infect Dis. 2014 Dec 30. pii: jiu837. [Epub ahead of print]

Latency-associated viral interleukin-10 (IL-10) encoded by human cytomegalovirus modulates cellular IL-10 and CCL8 Secretion during latent infection through changes in the cellular microRNA hsa-miR-92a. Poole E, Avdic S, Hodkinson J, Jackson S, Wills M, Slobedman B, Sinclair J. J Virol. 2014 Dec;88(24):13947-55. doi: 10.1128/JVI.02424-14. Epub 2014 Sep 24

Human cytomegalovirus latency-associated proteins elicit immune-suppressive IL-10 producing CD4⁺ T cells. Mason GM, Jackson S, Okecha G, Poole E, Sissons JG, Sinclair J, Wills MR. PLoS Pathog. 2013;9(10):e1003635. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003635. Epub 2013 Oct 10.

Latency-associated degradation of the MRP1 drug transporter during latent human cytomegalovirus infection. Weekes MP, Tan SY, Poole E, Talbot S, Antrobus R, Smith DL, Montag C, Gygi SP, Sinclair JH, Lehner PJ Science. 2013 Apr 12;340(6129):199-202. doi: 10.1126/science.1235047.

Human cytomegalovirus latency alters the cellular secretome, inducing cluster of differentiation (CD)4+ T-cell migration and suppression of effector function. Mason GM, Poole E, Sissons JG, Wills MR, Sinclair JH. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Sep 4;109(36):14538-43. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1204836109. Epub 2012 Jul 23.

Wei-Li Kuan, Emma Poole, Michael Fletcher, Sharon Karniely, Pam Tyers, Mark Wills, Roger A. Barker, and John H. Sinclair (2011) A novel neuroprotective therapy for Parkinson’s disease using a viral non-coding RNA that protects mitochondrial Complex I activity J. Experimental Medicine Jan 16;209(1):1-10

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