Associations of Cytomegalovirus Infection With All-Cause and Cardiovascular Mortality in Multiple Observational Cohort Studies of Older Adults

Sijia Chen, Graham Pawelec, Stella Trompet, David Goldeck, Laust H. Mortensen, P. Eline Slagboom, Kaare Christensen, Jacobijn Gussekloo, Patricia Kearney, Brendan M. Buckley, Ian Ford, J. Wouter Jukema, Rudi G.J. Westendorp, Andrea B. Maier

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND: Whether latent cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in older adults has any substantial health consequences is unclear. Here, we sought associations between CMV-seropositivity and IgG titer with all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in 5 longitudinal cohorts. METHODS: Leiden Longevity Study, Prospective Study of Pravastatin in the Elderly at Risk, Longitudinal Study of Aging Danish Twins, and Leiden 85-plus Study were assessed at median (2.8-11.4 years) follow-up . Cox regression and random effects meta-analysis were used to estimate mortality risk dependent on CMV serostatus and/or IgG antibody titer, in quartiles after adjusting for confounders. RESULTS: CMV-seropositivity was seen in 47%-79% of 10 122 white community-dwelling adults aged 59-93 years. Of these, 3519 had died on follow-up (579 from cardiovascular disease). CMV seropositivity was not associated with all-cause (hazard ratio [HR], 1.05; 95% confidence interval [CI], .97-1.14) or cardiovascular mortality (HR, 0.97; 95% CI, .83-1.13). Subjects in the highest CMV IgG quartile group had increased all-cause mortality relative to CMV-seronegatives (HR, 1.16; 95% CI, 1.04-1.29) but this association lost significance after adjustment for confounders (HR, 1.13; 95% CI, .99-1.29). The lack of increased mortality risk was confirmed in subanalyses. CONCLUSIONS: CMV infection is not associated with all-cause or cardiovascular mortality in white community-dwelling older adults.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-246
Number of pages9
JournalThe Journal of infectious diseases
Issue number2
Early online date10 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2020. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

This record is sourced from MEDLINE/PubMed, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine


  • aged
  • cardiovascular
  • cytomegalovirus
  • Herpesviridae
  • immunoglobulin G
  • mortality
  • seroepidemiologic studies


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