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Viruses 2017, 9(11), 339; https://doi.org/10.3390/v9110339

EBV and Apoptosis: The Viral Master Regulator of Cell Fate?

1
Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences and Centre for Human Virology, College of Medical and Dental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
2
Molecular Genetics of Cancer Division, The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute for Medical Research, Parkville, Melbourne, VIC 3052, Australia
3
Department of Medical Biology, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Melbourne, VIC 3052, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 October 2017 / Revised: 8 November 2017 / Accepted: 9 November 2017 / Published: 13 November 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Infection and Apoptosis)
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Abstract

Epstein–Barr virus (EBV) was first discovered in cells from a patient with Burkitt lymphoma (BL), and is now known to be a contributory factor in 1–2% of all cancers, for which there are as yet, no EBV-targeted therapies available. Like other herpesviruses, EBV adopts a persistent latent infection in vivo and only rarely reactivates into replicative lytic cycle. Although latency is associated with restricted patterns of gene expression, genes are never expressed in isolation; always in groups. Here, we discuss (1) the ways in which the latent genes of EBV are known to modulate cell death, (2) how these mechanisms relate to growth transformation and lymphomagenesis, and (3) how EBV genes cooperate to coordinately regulate key cell death pathways in BL and lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs). Since manipulation of the cell death machinery is critical in EBV pathogenesis, understanding the mechanisms that underpin EBV regulation of apoptosis therefore provides opportunities for novel therapeutic interventions. View Full-Text
Keywords: EBV; apoptosis; genetic cooperation; latency; virus cancers; p53; BCL-2 family; growth transformation EBV; apoptosis; genetic cooperation; latency; virus cancers; p53; BCL-2 family; growth transformation
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Fitzsimmons, L.; Kelly, G.L. EBV and Apoptosis: The Viral Master Regulator of Cell Fate? Viruses 2017, 9, 339.

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