Congenital CMV infection (cCMVi) affects 0.5–1% of all live births worldwide, making it the leading cause of sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) in childhood. The majority of infants with cCMVi have normal hearing at birth, but are at risk of developing late-onset SNHL. Currently, we lack reliable biomarkers to predict the development of SNHL in these infants. Here, we evaluate blood transcriptional profiles in 80 infants with cCMVi (49 symptomatic, 31 asymptomatic), enrolled in the first 3 weeks of life, and followed for 3 years to assess emergence of late-onset SNHL. The biosignatures of symptomatic and asymptomatic cCMVi are indistinguishable, suggesting that immune responses of infants with asymptomatic and symptomatic cCMVi are not different. Random forest analyses of initial samples in infants with cCMVi, irrespective of their clinical classification, identify a 16-gene classifier signature associated with the development of SNHL with 92% accuracy, suggesting its potential value as a biomarker.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)