varicella-zoster virus, VZV

varicella-zoster virus, VZV

The virus responsible for CHICKENPOX and for subsequent herpes zoster (shingles). The virus becomes established in the sensory ganglions of cranial and spinal nerves. Immunity after the first attack is high, but as the years pass waning VZV-specific memory T cell function allows reactivation of the virus so that shingles commonly occurs. Vaccination after the age of 60 may reduce the risk of shingles.
References in periodicals archive ?
SUMMARY--Herpes group viruses (herpes simplex virus, HSV; varicella-zoster virus, VZV; cytomegalovirus, CMV; and Epstein-Barr virus, EBV) remain an important cause of morbidity in immunocompromised persons.