Category Archives: CMV

Editor’s Pick by Amber: CMV – the SILENT RESIDENT

We are introducing a new regular section of the JIDC Blog entitled Editor’s Pick.  In this section JIDC Scientific Editor Amber Farooqui will choose an article from each month’s issue and give a short write-up to readers about the article.  Amber’s Pick for the August Issue is a Review Article from Jain and colleagues entitled “Cytomegalovirus infection in non-immunosuppressed critically ill patients.”  I am thrilled to have Amber as part of the JIDC Blog team and I look forward to reading her monthly picks.


What if we don’t realize the silent resident!

Do “YOU KNOW WHO”? Who is that living among us?  Are we aware?………. Certainly, I am NOT talking about the apparitions, ghosts or Lord Voldemort. People like me have nightmares about the bugs that easily dodge the immune surveillance system of our bodies.  These immune invisible bugs can remain silent for long periods of time and include such viruses as Cytomegalovirus (CMV).

CMV Picture from NIST

The CMV virus, which was discovered in 1921 as a cause of swollen cells, has now become an emerging health concern in immune-compromised individuals.  Due to the failure of the immune army to purge this virus, CMV poses serious health threats to HIV/AIDS patients and other immunocompromised individuals while silently enjoying the leisure of the immunocompetent bodies.

It is believed that CMV is ubiquitously present in all humans. The myth behind the latent infection is that the virus is able to impair antigen presentation in a variety of immune cell populations where pathogenic reactivation is believed to be triggered by immunosuppression. In recent years CMV reactivation has been widely observed in those debilitated patients who are categorized as immunocompetent by the hard-core definition, thus making clinical management more difficult. At this stage, it is difficult to determine how CMV reactivation occurs in such cases but the situation indicates that more people than previously thought are at risk of CMV reactivation.

Would you like to read more about CMV? This month JIDC delivers a  must-read review article by Jain et al. that summarizes the important aspects of CMV infection in non-immunosuppressed critically ill patients. The authors discuss the phenomena behind pathogenesis and host immune responses to the infection and provide a comprehensive review of clinicoepidemiological studies. You will also find a detailed discussion about the clinical management and diagnostic strategies of the infection.

H&E staining of lung sections by D Wiedbrauk, Ph.D., Ann Arbor, MI.
H E staining of lung sections by D Wiedbrauk shows CMV infection

Click here. Believe me; it’s worth reading this article.

Amber is from Karachi, Pakistan and she completed both her Bachelors of Science and PhD (2008) at the Karachi University.  She is now a Postdoctoral Scientist at the International Institute of Infection and Immunity in Shantou, China.  She is also a Scientific Editor for the Journal of Infection in Developing Countries.  Amber’s area of specialty is Influenza viruses and the host immune response. You can contact Amber at with any questions or comments.  She is always looking for scientific discussions!

Amber Farooqui


Filed under Amber, CMV, Editor's Pick, JIDC News, People, Viruses