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J Infect Dis. 2008 Oct 1;198(7):979-83. doi: 10.1086/591466.

Interferon and interferon-induced chemokine expression is associated with control of acute viremia in West Nile virus-infected blood donors.

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University of California, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Infect Dis. 2008 Nov 15;198(10):1575.


To understand early host responses controlling West Nile virus (WNV) infection, acutely viremic blood donors, identified by nucleic acid amplification testing, were enrolled and monitored for RNA-clearance and WNV-specific IgM and IgG antibodies. Viral load and chemokine and cytokine assays were performed on serial samples from donors whose index and first follow-up samples tested negative for IgM. A total of 84% of the specimens obtained from viremic donors before IgM/IgG seroconversion demonstrated a decreasing viral load. Levels of interferon (IFN)-alpha were significantly increased before IgM seroconversion, relative to those in control specimens. CXCL10 and CCL2 were significantly elevated in donor specimens obtained before IgM seroconversion, compared with those obtained after IgM seroconversion. These findings suggest that IFN-mediated innate immunity plays a key role in initial control of WNV replication.

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