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Viral Immunol. 2011 Aug;24(4):265-71. doi: 10.1089/vim.2010.0123.

Role of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines in chronic arthropathy in CHIKV infection.

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Regional Medical Research Centre (ICMR) , Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India.


Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) has caused large outbreaks worldwide in recent years. Acute-phase CHIKV infection has been reported to cause mild to severe febrile illness, and in some patients, this may be followed by long-lasting polyarthritis. The mainstay of treatment includes nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and other disease-modifying agents, the use of which is based on the assumption of an immunological interference mechanism in the pathogenesis. The present study has been designed to generate preliminary evidence to test this hypothesis. The levels of 30 cytokines were estimated in serum samples of acute CHIKV-infected patients, fully-recovered patients, patients with chronic CHIKV arthritis, and controls, using a quantitative multiplex bead ELISA. The levels of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1 and IL-6 were elevated in acute patients, but IFN-γ/β and TNF-α levels remained stable. IL-10, which might have an anti-inflammatory effect, was also elevated, indicating a predominantly anti-inflammatory response in the acute phase of infection. Elevation of MCP-1, IL-6, IL-8, MIP-1α, and MIP-1β was most prominent in the chronic phase. These cytokines and chemokines have been shown to play important roles in other arthritides, including epidemic polyarthritis (EPA) caused by Ross River virus (RRV) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).The immunopathogenesis of chronic CHIKV arthritis might have similarities to these arthritides. The novel intervention strategies being developed for EPA and RA, such as IL-6 and IL-8 signaling blockade, may also be considered for chronic CHIKV arthritis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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