The response of Kaposi's sarcoma (KS)-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) to inflammatory cytokine treatment of experimentally infected endothelial cells was investigated. The cytokines inhibited spontaneous KSHV lytic gene expression but not the level of infection. The data suggest that if inflammatory cytokines present in KS lesions contribute to KSHV pathogenesis, they do so in part by promoting latent KSHV infection of the endothelial cells.
We thank Ashlee Moses (Oregon Health Sciences University), Richard Ambinder (Johns Hopkins Medical School), and Ian Kerr (Imperial Cancer Research Fund, London, England) for the generous provision of cell lines; David Millan (University of Glasgow) for pathology advice and for providing some of the KS tissue sections; and the AIDS Cancer Specimen Bank (University of California, San Francisco) for providing other KS sections. David Bhella and Jim Aitken performed electron microscopy studies. Ruth Jarrett and Alice Gallagher helped in establishing the real-time RT-PCR method. Jay A. Levy and Clare E. Blue provided helpful comments on the manuscript.
This work was supported by grants to D.J.B. from The Cunningham Trust (ACC/KM CT), The Wellcome Trust (059008/Z/99/Z), and The Royal Society (574006.G503/21709/SM). The NIBSC Centralised Facility for AIDS Reagents is supported by EU Programme EVA (contract BMH4 97/2515) and the United Kingdom Medical Research Council.