Neutralizing and IgG antibodies against simian virus 40 in healthy pregnant women in Italy.
PLoS One. 2014 ;9(10):e110700. Epub 2014 Oct 21. PMID: 25335106
OBJECTIVE: Polyomavirus simian virus 40 (SV40) sequences have been detected in various human specimens and SV40 antibodies have been found in human sera from both healthy individuals and cancer patients. This study analyzed serum samples from healthy pregnant women as well as cord blood samples to determine the prevalence of SV40 antibodies in pregnancy.
METHODS: Serum samples were collected at the time of delivery from two groups of pregnant women as well as cord bloods from one group. The women were born between 1967 and 1993. Samples were assayed by two different serological methods, one group by neutralization of viral infectivity and the other by indirect ELISA employing specific SV40 mimotopes as antigens. Viral DNA assays by real-time polymerase chain reaction were carried out on blood samples.
RESULTS: Neutralization and ELISA tests indicated that the pregnant women were SV40 antibody-positive with overall prevalences of 10.6% (13/123) and 12.7% (14/110), respectively. SV40 neutralizing antibodies were detected in a low number of cord blood samples. Antibody titers were generally low. No viral DNA was detected in either maternal or cord bloods.
CONCLUSIONS: SV40-specific serum antibodies were detected in pregnant women at the time of delivery and in cord bloods. There was no evidence of transplacental transmission of SV40. These data indicate that SV40 is circulating at a low prevalence in the northern Italian population long after the use of contaminated vaccines.