Trichomonas vaginalis Virus among Women with Trichomoniasis and Associations with Demographics, Clinical Outcomes, and Metronidazole Resistance

Academic Article


  • Background: Trichomonas vaginalis virus (TVV) is a non-segmented, 4.5-5.5 kilo-base pair (kbp), double-stranded RNA virus infecting T. vaginalis. The objectives of this study were to examine the TVV prevalence in US Trichomonas vaginalis isolates and TVV's associations with patient demographics, clinical outcomes, and metronidazole resistance. Methods: Archived T. vaginalis isolates from the enrollment visits of 355 women participating in a T. vaginalis treatment trial in Birmingham, Alabama, were thawed and grown in culture. Their total RNA was extracted using a Trizol reagent. Contaminating, single-stranded RNA was precipitated using 4.0 M Lithium Chloride and centrifugation. The samples were analyzed by gel electrophoresis to visualize a 4.5 kbp band representative of TVV. In vitro testing for metronidazole resistance was also performed on 25/47 isolates obtained from the women's test of cure visits. Results: TVV was detected in 142/355 (40%) isolates at the enrollment visit. Women with TVV-positive (TVV+) isolates were significantly older (P =. 01), more likely to smoke (P =. 04), and less likely to report a history of gonorrhea (P =. 04). There was no association between the presence of clinical symptoms or repeat T. vaginalis infections with TVV+ isolates (P =. 14 and P =. 44, respectively). Of 25 test of cure isolates tested for metronidazole resistance, 0/10 TVV+ isolates demonstrated resistance, while 2/15 TVV-negative isolates demonstrated mild to moderate resistance (P =. 23). Conclusions: Of 355 T. vaginalis isolates tested for TVV, T. vaginalis isolates tested for TVV, the prevalence was 40%. However, there was no association of TVV+ isolates with clinical symptoms, repeat infections, or metronidazole resistance. These results suggest that TVV may be commensal to T. vaginalis.
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    Author List

  • Graves KJ; Ghosh AP; Schmidt N; Augostini P; Evan Secor W; Schwebke JR; Martin DH; Kissinger PJ; Muzny CA
  • Start Page

  • 2170
  • End Page

  • 2176
  • Volume

  • 69
  • Issue

  • 12