Erythrovirus B19 and autoimmune thyroid diseases. Review of the literature and pathophysiological hypotheses

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Abstract

Erythrovirus B19 (EVB19) has been incriminated, over recent years, in the onset and/or pathogenesis of many diseases, especially autoimmune thyroid diseases. This review of the literature (published over the last 40 years using Pubmed and Science Direct search engines) was designed to define the role of EVB19, particularly in autoimmune thyroid diseases.Two cases of subacute thyroiditis, one case of Graves' disease (associated with type 1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis), and one case of Hashimoto's thyroiditis following acute EVB19 infection were reported. A retrospective case–control study in a pediatric population demonstrated the role of EVB19 in Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Four retrospective studies of pathology slides (including PCR, immunohistochemistry or in situ hybridization) and a prospective case–control study on pathology slides demonstrated the presence of EVB19 in thyroid tissue of patients with benign multinodular goiter, Graves' disease, autoimmune thyroiditis (including Hashimoto's thyroiditis), and thyroid cancer. EVB19 can be demonstrated in the thyroid gland in a wide range of diseases. Although acute EVB19 infection could theoretically trigger autoimmune thyroid disease, there is currently no evidence that EVB19 plays a specific role in the pathophysiology of autoimmune thyroid diseases. J. Med. Virol. 87: 162–169, 2015. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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