PloS one 2017 09 0812(9) e0183951 doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0183951
We aimed to identify the risk factors associated with colonic cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in ulcerative colitis (UC) and to compare the clinical course between antiviral therapy-treated and -untreated groups in mucosal CMV-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) -positive cases.
We retrospectively selected 46 UC patients (>15 years old) in active phase who underwent colonoscopy with biopsy and were analyzed for CMV infection by mucosal PCR between October 2011 and December 2015 at our institution. Colonic CMV in inflamed mucosa was detected using quantitative real-time PCR. The clinical course was evaluated, including need for drug therapy/surgery or drug therapy intensification. In addition, we evaluated the clinical course between CMV-DNA- cases and CMV-DNA+ cases with low viral load.
At baseline, CMV-DNA+ patients were significantly older, had higher endoscopic scores, and required higher corticosteroid doses during the past 4 weeks than CMV-DNA- patients (p< 0.05). No significant differences were observed in disease duration, disease distribution, laboratory data, or use of other medication between CMV-DNA+ and CMV-DNA- patients. In the anti-CMV-treated group with a median (range) DNA load of 16,000 (9,000-36,400), 3patients achieved remission without additional UC therapy, 2 required additional UC therapy, and 1 required colectomy despite azathioprine and infliximab therapy. In the CMV-untreated group with a median (range) DNA load of 919 (157-5,480), all patients achieved remission with UC therapy alone. No significant difference was observed in the clinical course between CMV-DNA- cases and CMV-DNA+ cases with low viral loads. CONCLUSIONS
Aging, endoscopic UC activity, and corticosteroid dose predispose to colonic CMV infection, as determined by mucosal PCR, in UC. UC treatment without anti-CMV therapy may be warranted, particularly in patients with low-load CMV-DNA. Anti-CMV therapy alone does not always achieve clinical response in UC even in cases with high-load PCR.