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Coll Antropol. 2007 Dec;31(4):1159-67.

Pathogenic hantaviruses elicit different immunoreactions in THP-1 cells and primary monocytes and induce differentiation of human monocytes to dendritic-like cells.

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Scientific Unit, University Hospital for Infectious Diseases "Dr. Fran Mihaljević", Zagreb, Croatia.


Hantaviruses cause two important human illnesses, hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) and hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Both syndromes are believed to be immune-mediated diseases. Monocytes/macrophages are thought to be the main target cells for hantaviruses and important sources of and targets for cytokines/chemokines secretion. THP-1 cells have been used extensively as models for primary monocytes in biocompatibility research. The aim of our study was to determine if hantaviruses induce the same immunoreactions in THP-1 cells and primary monocytes/ macrophages and might therefore be suitable for immune studies of hantaviral infections. For that purpose we compared various cytokines/chemokines and their receptors in THP-1 cell line and primary monocytes/macrophages. Infected primary monocytes/macrophages induced mostly beta-chemokines and their receptors. In contrast, THP-1 cells, expressed receptors for CXC chemokines. Surprisingly, infected macrophages underwent morphological changes toward dendritic-like cells and increased expression of co-stimulatory molecules: CD40, CD80, CD83 and CD86. Our data indicate that THP-1 cells are not ideal for in vitro research of the immunopathogenesis of hantaviruses in humans. Further, our studies revealed potential roles for cytokines/chemokines in HFRS/HPS immunopathogenesis and point to intriguing possibilities for the possible differentiation of infected macrophages to dendritic-like cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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