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Annu Rev Med. 1999;50:531-45.

Spectrum of hantavirus infection: hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome and hantavirus pulmonary syndrome.

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, USA.


Hantaviruses chronically infect rodents without apparent disease, but when they are spread by aerosolized excreta to humans, two major clinical syndromes result: hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) and hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Both diseases appear to be immunopathologic, and inflammatory mediators are important in causing the clinical manifestations. In HPS, T cells act on heavily infected pulmonary endothelium, and it is suspected that gamma interferon and tumor necrosis factor are major agents of a reversible increase in vascular permeability that leads to severe, noncardiogenic pulmonary edema. HFRS has prominent systemic manifestations. The retroperitoneum is a major site of vascular leak and the kidneys suffer tubular necrosis. Both syndromes are accompanied by myocardial depression and hypotension or shock. HFRS is primarily a Eurasian disease, whereas HPS appears to be confined to the Americas; these geographic distinctions correlate with the phylogenies of the rodent hosts and the viruses that coevolved with them.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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