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Does a new polyomavirus contribute to Merkel cell carcinoma?

Kelly M Garneski1, James A DeCaprio2 and Paul Nghiem13*

Author Affiliations

1 Departments of Medicine/Dermatology and Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98109, USA

2 Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard University, Boston, MA 02115, USA

3 Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA 98109, USA

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Genome Biology 2008, 9:228  doi:10.1186/gb-2008-9-6-228

Published: 17 June 2008


A new technique designed to hunt for non-human transcripts has identified a novel SV40-like virus present in the majority of Merkel cell carcinomas. Here we examine what it will take to determine whether or not this virus contributes to carcinogenesis.