Nipah virus has recently emerged as a zoonotic agent that is highly pathogenic in humans. Outbreaks have occurred regularly over the last two decades in South and Southeast Asia, where mortality rates reach as high as 100 %. The natural reservoir of Nipah virus has been identified as bats from the Pteropus family, where infection is largely asymptomatic. Human disease is characterized by both respiratory and encephalitic components, and thus far, no effective vaccine or intervention strategies are available. Little is know about how the immune response of either the reservoir host or incidental hosts responds to infection, and how this immune response is either inadequate or might contribute to disease in the dead-end host. Experimental vaccines strategies have given us some insight into the immunological requirements for protection. This review summarizes our current understanding of the immune response to Nipah virus infection and emphasizes the need for further research.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 1, 2012
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