Caister Academic Press

Innate Immunity and Flavivirus Infection

Maudry Laurent-Rolle, Juliet Morrison and Adolfo García-Sastre
from: Molecular Virology and Control of Flaviviruses (Edited by: Pei-Yong Shi). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2012)


Flaviviruses, along with the distantly related Hepacivirus and Pestiviruses, belong to the Flaviviridae family. Currently, more than 70 flaviviruses have been reported, including dengue virus serotypes 1 to 4 (DENV1-4), yellow fever virus (YFV), West Nile virus (WNV), Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV). Flaviviruses are significant human and animal pathogens, creating a global public health challenge with more than 100 million people infected yearly. Typical manifestations of flaviviral disease in humans include jaundice, an acute febrile illness, hemorrhagic disease, encephalitis, and even death. Currently, there are no specific antiviral treatments for infection with any of the flaviviruses. An understanding of the interplay between the virus and the host immune system would aid in the development of flaviviral therapeutics. The innate immune system is the host's first line of defense against invading pathogens. Critical components of the innate immune system include natural killer (NK) cells, the complement system, and the ability to recognize pathogens like viruses and induce antiviral cytokines. These components of the innate immune system play complementary roles in limiting viral replication and dissemination, as well as initiation of the adaptive immune response. While all flaviviruses examined thus far suppress host innate immune responses to viral infection, the mechanisms by which this occurs differ among viruses. In this chapter, we will examine the roles that the different arms of the innate immune system play in protecting the host against flavivirus infection. We will also discuss the mechanisms that flaviviruses use to subvert the innate immune system and establish infection read more ...
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