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Special Issue "Varicella Zoster Virus"

A special issue of Viruses (ISSN 1999-4915). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Viruses".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Randall J. Cohrs

Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, University of Colorado, Aurora, CO 80045, USA
Website | E-Mail
Phone: 3037244325
Interests: molecular biology of alphaherpesvirus latency, especially epigenetic control of latent virus transcription; novel application of next-generation sequencing to questions in virology; reactivation of alphaherpesviruses in extreme environments

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

With recent advances in vaccine development, disease modeling and global analysis of nucleic acids, proteins, and metabolites, our understanding of the molecular biology of varicella zoster virus (VZV) has expanded.  In addition, application of novel diagnostic tools has expanded the spectrum of disease caused by this virus.  While disease caused by primary infection is still a concern, the larger problem is disease caused when latent VZV reactivates. Consequently, a great deal of current research is directed towards understanding the molecular biology of latency, including host innate and adaptive control of virus reactivation.  This Special Issue is designed to provide a firm base of understanding concerning VZV latency, the mechanism of virus reactivation including the spectrum of disease caused upon reactivation, especially in the expanding elderly and immunocompromised population.  In addition, current treatments including vaccines will be reviewed. 

The goal of this Special Issue is to assemble comprehensive reviews of VZV latency including the latent state, mechanism of reactivation, in vitro and in vivo models, immunology, vaccines, clinical aspects of virus reactivation, and therapy.  It is our hope that this up-to-date review will aid in directing future studies of this enigmatic human alphaherpesvirus.

Prof. Dr. Randall J. Cohrs
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Viruses is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • varicella zoster virus
  • human herpesvirus type 3
  • VZV
  • latency
  • reactivation
  • models
  • immunology
  • vaccines
  • disease
  • therapy
  • DNA-seq
  • RNA-seq
  • metabolomics

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessReview Molecular Aspects of Varicella-Zoster Virus Latency
Viruses 2018, 10(7), 349; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10070349
Received: 1 June 2018 / Revised: 19 June 2018 / Accepted: 27 June 2018 / Published: 28 June 2018
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Primary varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection causes varicella (chickenpox) and the establishment of a lifelong latent infection in ganglionic neurons. VZV reactivates in about one-third of infected individuals to cause herpes zoster, often accompanied by neurological complications. The restricted host range of VZV and,
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Primary varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection causes varicella (chickenpox) and the establishment of a lifelong latent infection in ganglionic neurons. VZV reactivates in about one-third of infected individuals to cause herpes zoster, often accompanied by neurological complications. The restricted host range of VZV and, until recently, a lack of suitable in vitro models have seriously hampered molecular studies of VZV latency. Nevertheless, recent technological advances facilitated a series of exciting studies that resulted in the discovery of a VZV latency-associated transcript (VLT) and provide novel insights into our understanding of VZV latency and factors that may initiate reactivation. Deducing the function(s) of VLT and the molecular mechanisms involved should now be considered a priority to improve our understanding of factors that govern VZV latency and reactivation. In this review, we summarize the implications of recent discoveries in the VZV latency field from both a virus and host perspective and provide a roadmap for future studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Varicella Zoster Virus)

Figure 1

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Molecular aspects of VZV latency (lead author, Dr. W.J.D. Ouwendijk)
Current in vitro models of VZV latency (lead author, Dr. Nicholas Baird)
Current in vivo models of VZV latency (lead author, Dr. Ravi Mahalingam)
Diseases caused upon reactivation of VZV from latency (lead author, Dr. Maria Nagel)
Vaccines to control varicella zoster virus (lead author, Dr. William R. Jacobs Jr.)
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