A Cluster of Fatal Tick-borne Encephalitis Virus Infection in Organ Transplant Setting.

TitleA Cluster of Fatal Tick-borne Encephalitis Virus Infection in Organ Transplant Setting.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsLipowski D, Popiel M, Perlejewski K, Nakamura S, Bukowska-Osko I, Rzadkiewicz E, Dzieciatkowski T, Milecka A, Wenski W, Ciszek M, Debska-Slizien A, Ignacak E, Cortes KC, Pawelczyk A, Horban A, Radkowski M, Laskus T
JournalThe Journal of infectious diseases//J Infect Dis
Pagination896 - 901
Date Published2017
ISBN Number1537-66130022-1899
Other Numbersih3, 0413675

Background.: Tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) infection has become a major health problem in Europe and is currently a common cause of viral brain infection in many countries. Encephalitis in transplant recipients, althrough rare, is becoming a recognized complication. Our study provides the first description of transmission of TBEV through transplantation of solid organs., Methods.: Three patients who received solid organ transplants from a single donor (2 received kidney, and 1 received liver) developed encephalitis 17-49 days after transplantation and subsequently died. Blood and autopsy tissue samples were tested by next-generation sequencing (NGS) and reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR)., Results.: All 3 recipients were first analyzed in autopsy brain tissue samples and/or cerebrospinal fluid by NGS, which yielded 24-52 million sequences per sample and 9-988 matched TBEV sequences in each patient. The presence of TBEV was confirmed by RT-PCR in all recipients and in the donor, and direct sequencing of amplification products corroborated the presence of the same viral strain., Conclusions.: We demonstrated transmission of TBEV by transplantation of solid organs. In such a setting, TBEV infection may be fatal, probably due to pharmacological immunosuppression. Organ donors should be screened for TBEV when coming from or visiting endemic areas.

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