Virology Blog on XMRV in the Respiratory Tract

CBS

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I e-mailed Dr. Racaniello yesterday to see if he could provide some perspective on the importance of the recent German study finding XMRV in the respiratory tract. Specifically, I wanted to know about the concerns surrounding transmissibility.

He responded today by posting on his blog about the study. My read is that the HIV data he presents (in a linked table) would suggest that there are key questions (such as the level of the virus in the respiratory tract) that we simply do not have data to answer at present BUT the HIV data would suggest that detecting XMRV is, on its own, not sufficient to infer transmissibility via this route.

Does finding XMRV in the respiratory tract prove that the virus can be transmitted by the respiratory route? No, not until we have other information, including the level of virus in respiratory secretions, and the infectivity of XMRV. In this context it is interesting to note that it was not possible to isolate infectious XMRV from the respiratory tract of the German patients.
Here's the link to the VirologyBlog article: http://www.virology.ws/2010/05/19/xmrv-in-human-respiratory-tract/

My sincere thanks to Dr. Racaniello.
 
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and my sincere thanks to you Shane. Great idea! And how impressive that Dr Racaniello responded so quickly.

ETA (OT [hey - I'm starting to learn these acronyms] Have been meaning to say, I LOVE your ski metaphor.
 

omerbasket

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Very interesting what he wrote.
However, I have to say that I want to understand the table he linked to, but can't.
I know that although there is HIV-1 in saliva it is not infecting people, but how can I understand this from this table? If someone would be able to explain the table for me, I would appreciate it.
 

gracenote

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Thanks Shane. Very interesting.

I'm curious about this quote:

Does finding XMRV in the respiratory tract prove that the virus can be transmitted by the respiratory route? No, not until we have other information, including the level of virus in respiratory secretions, and the infectivity of XMRV. In this context it is interesting to note that it was not possible to isolate infectious XMRV from the respiratory tract of the German patients.
I seem to remember that the reason they couldn't isolate "infectious XMRV" from the respiratory tract was due to the storage of the samples. It's curious to me how Dr. Racaniello worded this.

Not important: I clicked on the link to the German XMRV article at the end of his blog and got this message:

You 404d it. Gnarly, dude.
Surfin aint easy, and right now, youre lost at sea. But dont worry; simply pick an option from the list below, and youll be back out riding the waves of the Internet in no time.

Hit the back button on your browser. Its perfect for situations like this!
Head on over to the home page.
Punt.
Whew! I found my way back!
 

omerbasket

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Thanks Shane. Very interesting.

I'm curious about this quote:



I seem to remember that the reason they couldn't isolate "infectious XMRV" from the respiratory tract was due to the storage of the samples. It's curious to me how Dr. Racaniello worded this.
It's not accurate, because they said:
Attempts to isolate infectious virus from XMRV sequence–positive respiratory samples failed, possibly because of inadequate storage of samples before virus culturing attempts or relatively low copy numbers of the virus within the samples.
 

CBS

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Attempts to isolate infectious virus from XMRV sequencepositive respiratory samples failed, possibly because of inadequate storage of samples before virus culturing attempts or relatively low copy numbers of the virus within the samples.
I've followed Virology Blog for some time now and I've found Dr. Racaniello to be very eager to educate and clarify on issues such as this. I'd take a crack at responding but to be frank, I think posting the question on Virology Blog might be interesting. It has not been my impression that there are any agendas driving the content on that site.

Anyone care to take a crack at asking the question? omerbasket or gracenote?