HHV-8 is a gamma herpes virus that occures only in humans. HHV-8 virus infections are quite common. Transmission of the disease is caused by sexual intercourse and the most risky group is represented by homosexual men. Under normal circumstances the virus is harmless and remains in the organism in latent form during the whole life. Under certain circumstances (HIV infection, immunosuppression in transplantation etc.) The HHV-8 virus reactivates and leads to the developement of the cancer called Kaposi's sarcoma.
Detection of HHV-8 is performed by single-round PCR amplifying the part of the gene encoding the glycoproteine M.