The human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) and glioma sym- posium was convened on April 17, 2011 in Washington, DC, and was attended by oncologists and virologists involved in studying the relationship between HCMV and gliomas. The purpose of the meeting was to reach a consensus on the role of HCMV in the pathology of gliomas and to clarify directions for future research. First, the group summarized data that describe how HCMV biology overlaps with the key pathways of cancer. Then, on the basis of published data and ongoing research, a consensus was reached that there is sufficient evidence to conclude that HCMV sequences and viral gene expression exist in most, if not all, malig- nant gliomas, that HCMV could modulate the malig- nant phenotype in glioblastomas by interacting with key signaling pathways; and that HCMV could serve as a novel target for a variety of therapeutic strategies. In summary, existing evidence supports an oncomodula- tory role for HCMV in malignant gliomas, but future studies need to focus on determining the role of HCMV as a glioma-initiating event.
“HCMV can also do every one of the things that generally considered the 10 hallmarks ofcancer,” says Kalejta, a member of the McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research, Carbone Cancer Center, Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Center and Institute for Molecular Virology at UW-Madison.