JC polyomavirus (JCPyV) is reactivated in approximately 20% of renal transplant recipients and it may rarely cause JCPyV-associated nephropathy (JCPyVAN). Whereas progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy of the brain is caused by rearranged neurotropic JCPyV, little is known about viral sequence variation in JCPyVAN due to the rarity of this condition.Using single-molecule real-time sequencing, characterization of full-length JCPyV genomes from urine and plasma of one JCPyVAN patient and twenty stable renal transplant recipients with JCPyV viruria was attempted. Sequence analysis of JCPyV strains was performed with the emphasis on the NCCR region, the major capsid protein gene VP1 and the large T antigen (LTag) gene.Exclusively archetype strains were identified in urine of the JCPyVAN patient. Full-length JCPyV sequences were not retrieved from plasma. Archetype strains were found in urine of nineteen stable renal transplant recipients, with JCPyV quasispecies detected in five samples. In a patient with minor graft dysfunction, a strain with archetype-like NCCR region was discovered. Individual point mutations were detected in both VP1 and LTag genes.Archetype JCPyV was dominant in the JCPyVAN patient and in stable renal transplant recipients. Archetype rather than rearranged JCPyV seems to drive the pathogenesis of JCPyVAN.
Journal: The Journal of infectious diseases