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Properties of herpesviruses

Enveloped double stranded DNA viruses.

Genome consisits of long and short fragments which may be orientated in either direction, giving a total of 4 isomers.

Three subfamilies:

Alphaherpesviruses - HSV-1, HSV-2, VZV

Betaherpesviruses - CMV, HHV-6, HHV-7

Gammaherpesviruses - EBV,  HHV-8

Set up latent or persistent infection following primary infection

Reactivation are more likely to take place during periods of immunosuppression

Both primary infection and reactivation are likely to be more serious in immunocompromised patients.

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