Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is the most common cause of congenital and perinatal infections. To determine the ability of immunological response to CMV, the flow cytometric assay was evaluated as a tool for real-time monitoring of specific cellular immunity in children with congenital CMV infection and infected women during pregnancy. Longitudinal cohort study of children with congenital CMV infection evaluated at birth and followed up with serial age-appropriate neurodevelopmental testing. Fequencies of CMV-specific CD4+ T cell in these children were detected by intracellular cytokines (ICC), interferon (IFN)-γ and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, staining.
Findings detected by CT and MRI were the most sensitive predictor for neurodevelopmental prognosis of the children. Frequencies of CMV-specific CD4+ T cells detected by ICC, both (IFN)-γ and (TNF)-α, were higher in children and pregnant women with active CMV infection than those in healthy controls. Understanding the epidemiology of CMV is a key element in development of strategies for prevention of infection in premature infants. Categorizing findings obtained by the ICC assay may helps to evaluate of the cellular immunity in children with congenital CMV infection and in infected women during pregnancy.
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