Professor David Tscharke, Head, Department of Immunology and Infectious Disease, The John Curtin Schoool of Medical Research, ANU
Even when we are healthy, we are silent hosts for many viruses. Viruses from the herpes family are especially common. Many people will know that a herpes virus (herpes simplex virus - HSV) causes cold sores and genital herpes. They might not know that a very close relative of HSV is the beastie that causes chickenpox and shingles. More distant members of the herpes family cause glandular fever and are a major problem for people who have had organ transplants. Once you are infected with any of these viruses, they are with you for life – so herpes, in all its forms, is forever.