Molecular control for BK virus is used for the laboratory diagnosis and management of patients with BK infections.
Polyoma viruses are DNA viruses (double stranded DNA, ~ 5,000 base pairs, circular genome), are small (40-50 nm in diameter), have a microscopic structure and are not surrounded by a lipoprotein envelope. They are potentially oncogenic (ie, tumor-causing) and often persist causing latent infections in the host without causing obvious disease but can cause tumors to appear in a host of a different species or in a host with an ineffective immune system. The name Polyoma refers to the ability of viruses to create multiple (-oma) tumors.
The most important in terms of pathogenicity to human Polyoma viruses are:
- JC virus that can infect the respiratory system, kidneys, brain (can sometimes cause fatal progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy)
- BK virus that causes a mild respiratory infection and can affect the kidneys of immunosuppressed transplant patients. Both viruses are widespread: about 80% of the US adult population has antibodies against JC and BK
- SV40 virus which is not generally considered to be pathogenic to humans but has been found in various types of tumors.
In January 2008, a new type of Merkel cell virus was described and was described as the most likely causative agent of Merkel cell cancer (skin carcinoma).
All Polyoma viruses are particularly common in childhood and young adults. Most of these infections appear to cause little or no symptoms. It is likely that these viruses will remain lifelong in almost all adults. Diseases caused to humans by Polyoma viruses are more common among immunocompromised individuals either due to AIDS, old age or after transplantation.
Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. Correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".
Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.
At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.