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Virol J. 2014 Mar 26;11:57. doi: 10.1186/1743-422X-11-57.

Kinetics of pulmonary immune cells, antibody responses and their correlations with the viral clearance of influenza A fatal infection in mice.

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  • 1The Second Artillery General Hospital, PLA, 16 Xinjiekouwai Street, Xicheng District Beijing 100088, China.


Fatal influenza A virus infection is a major threat to public health throughout the world. Lung macrophages and neutrophils have critical roles for both the pathogenesis and viral clearance of fatal viral infections. These are complicated by the interaction of innate immunity and adaptive immunity against viral infection. In this study, we investigated the overall kinetics of lung macrophages, neutrophils, CD4⁺T cells, CD8⁺T cells, CD38⁺ cells, and CD138⁺ cells, the levels of antibody and cytokine responses, both in the early and late phases of fatal infection with A/PR/8/34 (H1N1) virus in mice. The changes in lung viral load were also evaluated. We found that pulmonary macrophages and neutrophils both accumulated in the early and late phases of fatal infections and they positively correlated with the lung and serum antibody titers, and negatively correlated with the viral load locally. The secretion of IL-6 might relate to high numbers of macrophages and neutrophils in the early infection. The work implies that pulmonary macrophages, neutrophils and the antibody response all have an essential role in virus elimination of fatal influenza A viral infection. These findings may have implications for the development of prophylactic and therapeutic strategies in fatal influenza A viral infection. Further evaluation of the cooperation among macrophages, neutrophils and antibody responses in eliminating the virus with fatal infection is needed.

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