HSV-2 transmission occurs through genital-genital contact during

HSV-2 transmission occurs through genital-genital contact during sexual activity. HSV-2 may be transmitted in the absence of signs or symptoms of infection in the infected partner, during episodes of subclinical shedding [10]. In addition, most people who acquire HSV-2 are asymptomatic at the time of acquisition [11]. Transmission mTOR inhibitor of HSV from mother to infant during birth is a serious complication of genital herpes, and can result in long-term neurologic sequelae or mortality [12].

Women who acquire HSV during pregnancy are at the highest risk of transmitting the infection [13]. With an estimated incidence of 4–31/100,000 live births [14] and [15], neonatal herpes is too rare to be used as an endpoint in a clinical trial. However, prevention

of HSV acquisition during pregnancy is an important goal of developing an effective HSV vaccine. The greatest public health impact of HSV-2 infection is its role in promulgating the HIV-1 epidemic. BLZ945 solubility dmso Persons with HSV-2 infection are 3-fold more likely to acquire HIV-1 infection [16]; this risk increases up to 8-fold if the exposure occurs soon after acquiring HSV-2 infection [17] and [18]. In HIV-1 infected persons, HIV-1 is found in HSV-2 genital ulcers [19], and persons with genital ulcers are at increased risk of transmitting HIV-1 [20]. In regions with high HSV-2 seroprevalence (>80%), 25–50% of HIV-1 infections are attributable to HSV-2 [21]. Mathematical models suggest that even moderately effective prophylactic HSV-2 vaccines would lead to a marked decrease in HIV-1 incidence if given at high coverage [22]. Non-specific serine/threonine protein kinase The biologic basis for this predisposition is the persistent mucosal inflammatory response induced by HSV-2. Genital biopsy studies have revealed that HSV-2 ulcers are associated with an infiltrate of CD4+ T-cells bearing the HIV-1 co-receptors CCR5 or CXCR4, which persists during daily antiviral therapy for HSV [23]. Histopathologic studies of foreskins from HIV-1-seronegative men demonstrate that HSV-2 seropositive men have increased concentration of CD4+ and CD8+

T-cells as compared to HSV-2 seronegative men [24]. Similar findings have been found in cervical cytobrush samples from HIV-1 negative, HSV-2 seropositive women [25]. Currently available HSV-2 prevention strategies are inadequate; each reduces the risk of transmission by approximately 50%. Evidence-based methods include use of suppressive antiviral therapy [26], disclosure of serostatus to susceptible partners [27], and consistent condom use [28]. While male circumcision decreases the risk of HSV-2 acquisition by nearly 30% [29], there are conflicting data about the role of circumcision in transmission to women [30] and [31]. These partly effective strategies may be useful for management of individual patients, but they are unlikely to be of public health benefit.

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