Detection of human herpesvirus 6 in tissues involved by sinus histiocytosis with massive lymphadenopathy (Rosai-Dorfman disease)

J Infect Dis. 1992 Aug;166(2):291-5. doi: 10.1093/infdis/166.2.291.


After preliminary serologic data demonstrated elevated antibody titers to human herpesvirus (HHV) 6 in patients with sinus histiocytosis with massive lymphadenopathy (SHML) or Rosai-Dorfman disease, tissues were examined from 9 patients with classical SHML to search for evidence of HHV-6 infection. Involved tissues from 7 of the 9 patients had detectable HHV-6 by in situ hybridization: Tissue from 1 had detectable Epstein-Barr virus genome but no HHV-6 and tissue from another had no detectable HHV-6 or Epstein-Barr virus. These studies suggest that HHV-6 and, to a lesser extent, Epstein-Barr virus may be involved in the etiology of SHML.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Cell Line
  • Herpesvirus 6, Human / genetics
  • Herpesvirus 6, Human / immunology
  • Herpesvirus 6, Human / isolation & purification*
  • Histiocytosis, Sinus / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization


  • Antibodies, Viral