Prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)) is an arachidonic acid metabolite mainly produced by activated monocytes/macrophages (Mo/Mphi) that display broad immunomodulatory activities. Several viruses capable of infecting Mo/Mphi modulate PGE(2) synthesis in a way that favors the infection processes and the spread of virions. In the present work, we studied the effect of human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) infection of Mo/Mphi on PGE(2) synthesis. Our results indicate that HHV-6 induces COX-2 gene expression and PGE(2) synthesis within a few hours of infection. We mapped the different promoter elements associated with COX-2 gene activation by HHV-6 to two cis-acting elements: a cyclic AMP-responsive element and an activator protein-1 element. HHV-6 immediate-early protein 2 was identified as a modulator of COX-2 gene expression in Mo/Mphi. Finally, addition of PGE(2) to HHV-6-infected peripheral blood mononuclear cells cultures was found to increase significantly viral replication. Overall, these results further contribute to the immunomodulatory properties of HHV-6 and highlight a potential role for eicosanoids in the replication process of this virus.