Simian virus 40 and cancer

  • Sandra Eliasz | mbocche@lumc.edu Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola University Chicago, Maywood, United States.
  • Michele Carbone Cancer Research Center of Hawaii, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, United States.
  • Maurizio Bocchetta Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola University Chicago, Maywood, United States.

Abstract

Since its discovery in 1960 as a contaminant of poliovaccines, Simian Virus 40 (SV40) has been the object of extensive studies to assess whether this oncogenic virus plays a role in human carcinogenesis. Over the last two decades, this question has met with broad scepticism. However, there is increasing evidence linking SV40 to specific types of human cancer, especially malignant mesothelioma. Recently, two laboratories using different experimental approaches independently confirmed that SV40 acts synergistically with environmental fibers to promote mesothelial cell transformation and mesothelioma. Most of the scepticism concerning SV40 and cancer was due to the lack of clear epidemiologic data. However, it is still not clear how SV40 circulates in the human population, making the identification of SV40-exposed versus non-exposed cohorts problematic. Consequently, the most helpful insights into SV40-mediated carcinogenesis have come from molecular pathology, cell and molecular biology, and from animal studies.

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Published
2011-12-18
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Issue
Section
Reviews
Keywords:
Oncogenic DNA viruses - Viral infection - Viral replication - Mesothelioma - Brain tumors
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  • FULL TEXT: 150
How to Cite
Eliasz, S., Carbone, M., & Bocchetta, M. (2011). Simian virus 40 and cancer. Oncology Reviews, 1(3), 131-140. https://doi.org/10.4081/oncol.2007.148