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J Infect Dis. 1998 Feb;177(2):269-76.

Respiratory syncytial virus affects pulmonary function in BALB/c mice.

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Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital and State University of New York at Buffalo School of Medicine, USA.


BALB/c mice inoculated intranasally with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) were studied in a whole-body plethysmograph to determine if signs of respiratory illness similar to those observed in human infants could be detected. Also, responsiveness to methacholine was assessed. RSV-infected mice showed significantly higher respiratory rates than did controls (409.2 vs. 305.2 breaths/min, P < .0001). Significantly increased airway responsiveness to methacholine was noted, infected mice responding to a 100-fold lower dose than controls (P = .003). Together, these data provide the first objective evidence of respiratory illness in the mouse model of RSV infection, which enhances the value of this model for evaluating effects of vaccines, antivirals, and other drugs acting on respiratory tract disease caused by RSV.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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