Rationale: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) bronchiolitis in infants may be followed by the development of asthma-like symptoms. Age at first infection dictates consequences upon reinfection. Reinfection of mice initially exposed as neonates to RSV enhanced development of airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR), eosinophilic inflammation, and mucus hyperproduction. RSV lower respiratory tract disease is associated with activation of the leukotriene pathway.
Objectives: To determine the effects of montelukast (MK), a cysteinyl leukotriene (cysLT) receptor antagonist, in primary and secondary RSV-infected newborn and adult mice.
Methods: BALB/c mice were infected with RSV at 1 week (neonate) or 6 to 8 weeks (adult) of age and reinfected 5 weeks later. MK was administered 1 day before the initial infection and through Day 6 after infection. Seven days after primary or secondary infection, airway function was assessed by lung resistance to increasing doses of inhaled methacholine; lung inflammation, goblet cell metaplasia, and cytokine levels in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid were monitored.
Measurements and Main Results: RSV infection induced cysLT release in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. MK decreased RSV-induced AHR, airway inflammation, and increased IFN-γ production in primary infected adult and neonatal mice. MK, administered during initial infection of neonates but not during secondary infection, prevented subsequent enhancement of AHR, airway eosinophilia, and mucus hyperproduction upon reinfection.
Conclusions: MK attenuated the initial responses to primary RSV infection in both age groups and altered the consequences of RSV reinfection in mice initially infected as neonates. These data support an important role for cysLT in RSV-induced AHR and inflammation.
airway; inflammation; RSV; cysteinyl leukotrienes
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection is associated with serious lung disease in infants and immunocompromised individuals and is linked to development of asthma. In mice, acute RSV infection causes airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR), inflammation, and mucus hypersecretion. Infected cells induce complement activation, producing the anaphylatoxin C3a. Here we show RSV infected wild type mice produce Th17 cytokines, a response not previously associated with viral infections. Mice deficient in the C3aR (C3aR1−/−) fail to develop AHR following acute RSV infection, and production of Th17 cytokines was significantly attenuated. Tachykinin production has also been implicated in RSV pathophysiology, and tachykinin receptor null mice (TACR1−/−) were similarly protected from developing AHR. These animals were also deficient in production of Th17 cytokines. Tachykinin release was absent in C3aR1−/− mice, while C3a levels were unchanged in TACR1−/− animals. Thus, our data reveal a crucial sequence following acute RSV infection where initial C3a production causes tachykinin release, followed by activation of the IL-17A pathway. Deficiency of either receptor affords protection from AHR, identifying two potential therapeutic targets.
respiratory syncytial virus; C3a anaphylatoxin; complement; inflammation; IL17A; airway hyperresponsiveness; tachykinins; substance P; hemokinin-1
Infants experiencing severe respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) bronchiolitis have an increased frequency of wheeze and asthma in later childhood. Since most severe RSV infections occur between the 8th and 24th postnatal week, we examined whether age at first infection determines the balance of cytokine production and lung pathology during subsequent rechallenge. Primary RSV infection in newborn mice followed the same viral kinetics as in adults but was associated with reduced and delayed IFN-γ responses. To study rechallenge, mice were infected at 1 day or 1, 4, or 8 weeks of age and reinfected at 12 weeks. Neonatal priming produced more severe weight loss and increased inflammatory cell recruitment (including T helper 2 cells and eosinophils) during reinfection, whereas delayed priming led to enhanced interferon γ production and less severe disease during reinfection. These results show the crucial importance of age at first infection in determining the outcome of reinfection and suggest that the environment of the neonatal lung is a major determinant of cytokine production and disease patterns in later life. Thus, simply delaying RSV infection beyond infancy might reduce subsequent respiratory morbidity in later childhood.
bronchiolitis; asthma; immunity; pneumovirinae; virus
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most important cause of severe, lower respiratory tract infections in infants, and RSV infections have been associated with chronic wheezing and asthma during childhood. However, the mechanism of RSV-induced airway inflammation and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) is poorly understood. Furthermore, there are presently neither effective vaccines nor drugs available for the prevention or treatment of RSV infections. In this study, we investigated the effect of the plant extract resveratrol as a means of preventing airway inflammation and attenuating RSV-induced AHR. Our data showed that resveratrol reduced RSV lung titers and the number of infiltrating lymphocytes present in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and reduced inflammation. Furthermore, resveratrol attenuated airway responses to methacholine following RSV infection and significantly decreased gamma interferon (IFN-γ) levels in BALF of RSV-infected mice. Data presented in this report demonstrated that resveratrol controlled Toll-like receptor 3 (TLR3) expression, inhibited the TRIF signaling pathway, and induced M2 receptor expression following RSV infection. These data support a role for the use of resveratrol as a means of reducing IFN-γ levels associated with RSV-mediated airway inflammation and AHR, which may be mediated via TLR3 signaling.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the major cause of infantile bronchiolitis and hospitalization. Severe RSV disease is associated with the development of wheezing in later life. In a mouse model of the delayed effects of RSV, the age at primary infection determines responses to reinfection in adulthood. During primary RSV infection, neonatal BALB/c mice developed only mild disease and recruited CD8 cells that were defective in gamma interferon production. Secondary reinfection of neonatally primed mice caused enhanced inflammation and profuse lung T-cell recruitment. CD4 cell depletion during secondary RSV challenge attenuated disease (measured by weight loss); depletion of CD8 cells also markedly attenuated disease severity but enhanced lung eosinophilia, and depletion of both CD4 and CD8 cells together completely abrogated weight loss. Depletion of CD8 (but not CD4) cells during primary neonatal infection was protective against weight loss during adult challenge. Therefore, T cells, in particular CD8 T cells, play a central role in the outcome of neonatal infection by enhancing disease during secondary challenge. These findings demonstrate a crucial role for T cells in the regulation of immune responses after neonatal infection.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection is the major cause of bronchiolitis in infants and is a risk factor for the development of asthma. Allergic asthmatics are more susceptible to RSV infection and viral exacerbation.
Since the effectiveness of corticosteroids in treating RSV infection has been controversial, we tested fluticasone propionate (FP) and salmeterol (Sal) alone versus FP plus Sal (FPS) on RSV-induced airway inflammation. Mice were sensitized and challenged with ovalbumin (OVA) and infected with RSV. Following infection they were treated with FP, Sal, or FPS intranasally and airway hyperreactivity (AHR), inflammation and RSV titers were examined.
The group treated with FPS showed significantly lower AHR compared to the group treated with FP or Sal alone. The group treated with FP alone showed slightly decreased (non-significant) AHR compared to controls. Treatment with FPS resulted in significant decreases in the percentage of eosinophils and neutrophils in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and in lung pathology compared to FP or Sal. FP alone decreased eosinophils but not neutrophils or lymphocytes, while Sal alone decreased eosinophils and neutrophils but not lymphocytes. FPS treatment of mice infected with RSV in the absence of allergen sensitization resulted in a 50% decrease of RSV titer in the lung and a reduction in neutrophils compared to FP or Sal.
Together, these results indicate that fluticasone in combination with salmeterol is a more effective treatment for decreasing airway hyperreactivity and inflammation than either of them alone in allergen-sensitized, RSV-infected mice.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common cause of severe lower respiratory tract diseases (bronchiolitis and pneumonia) during infancy and early childhood. There is increasing evidence which indicates that severe pulmonary disease caused by RSV infection in infancy is associated with recurrent wheezing and development of asthma later in childhood. However, the underlying mechanisms linking RSV infection to persistent airway hyperresponsiveness and dysfunction are not fully defined. To study these processes in ways which are not available in humans, animal models have been established and have provided valuable insight into the pathophysiology of RSV-induced disease. In this paper, we discuss experimental models of RSV infection in mice and highlight a new investigative approach in which mice are initially infected as neonates and then reinfected later in life. The findings shed light on the mechanisms underlying the association between early severe RSV infection and development of asthma later in childhood.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the main cause of bronchiolitis, the major cause of hospitalization of infants. An ideal RSV vaccine would be effective for neonates, but the immune responses of infants differ markedly from those of adults, often showing a bias toward T-helper 2 (Th2) responses and reduced gamma interferon (IFN-γ) production. We previously developed recombinant RSV vectors expressing IFN-γ and interleukin-4 (IL-4) that allow us to explore the role of these key Th1 and Th2 cytokines during infection. The aim of the current study was to explore whether an immunomodulation of infant responses could enhance protection. The expression of IFN-γ by a recombinant RSV vector (RSV/IFN-γ) attenuated primary viral replication in newborn mice without affecting the development of specific antibody or T-cell responses. Upon challenge, RSV/IFN-γ mice were protected from the exacerbated disease observed for mice primed with wild-type RSV; however, antiviral immunity was not enhanced. Conversely, the expression of IL-4 by recombinant RSV did not affect virus replication in neonates but greatly enhanced Th2 immune responses upon challenge without affecting weight loss. These studies demonstrate that it is possible to manipulate infant immune responses by using cytokine-expressing recombinant viruses and that neonatal deficiency in IFN-γ responses may lead to enhanced disease during secondary infection.
The induction of inflammatory cytokines during respiratory viral infections contributes to both disease pathogenesis and resolution. The present studies investigated the role of the chemokine CxCL10 and its specific receptor, CxCR3, in the host response to pulmonary respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection. Antibody-mediated neutralization of CxCL10 resulted in a significant increase in disease pathogenesis, including airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR), mucus gene expression, and impaired viral clearance. When the pulmonary cytokine levels were examined, only type I IFN and IL-12p70 were significantly reduced. These latter observations were reflected in reduced dendritic cell (DC) numbers and DC maturation in the lungs of RSV-infected mice treated with anti-CxCL10. Neutralization of the only known receptor for CxCL10, CxCR3, resulted in similar increases in pathogenic responses. When bone marrow-derived DC (BMDC) were incubated with CxCL10 and RSV, an upregulation of type I IFN was observed. In addition, T lymphocytes were also examined and a significant decrease in the number of RSV M2 peptide-specific CD8+ T cells was identified. These findings highlight a previously unappreciated role for the CXCL10:CXCR3 signaling axis in RSV-infected animals by recruiting virus-specific T cells into the lung and promoting viral clearance.
Rodent; Lung; Dendritic Cells; Chemokines; Cytokines
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection causes bronchiolitis in infants and children, which can be fatal, especially in immunocompromised patients. The BALB/c mouse, currently used as a model for studying RSV immunopathology, is semi-permissive to the virus. A mouse model that more closely mimics human RSV infection is needed. Since immunocompromised conditions increase risk of RSV infection, the possibility of enhancing RSV infection in the BALB/c mouse by pretreatment with cyclophosphamide was examined in this study. BALB/c mice were treated with cyclophosphamide (CYP) and five days later, they were infected with RSV intranasally. Pulmonary RSV titers, inflammation and airway hyperresponsiveness were measured five days after infection.
CYP-treated mice show higher RSV titers in their lungs of than the untreated mice. Also, a decreased percentage of macrophages and an increased number of lymphocytes and neutrophils were present in the BAL of CYP-treated mice compared to controls. The CYP-treated group also exhibited augmented bronchoalveolar and interstitial pulmonary inflammation. The increased RSV infection in CYP-treated mice was accompanied by elevated expression of IL-10, IL-12 and IFN-γ mRNAs and proteins compared to controls. Examination of CYP-treated mice before RSV infection showed that CYP treatment significantly decreased both IFN-γ and IL-12 expression.
These results demonstrate that CYP-treated BALB/c mice provide a better model for studying RSV immunopathology and that decreased production of IL-12 and IFN-γ are important determinants of susceptibility to RSV infection.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the leading viral pathogen responsible for bronchiolitis and pneumonia in infants and young children worldwide. We have previously shown in the mouse model that treatment with an anti-RSV neutralizing monoclonal antibody (MAb) against the F glycoprotein of RSV, palivizumab, decreased lung inflammation, airway obstruction, and postmethacholine airway hyperresponsiveness. MEDI-524, or Numax, is a new MAb derived from palivizumab with enhanced neutralizing activity against RSV. We compared the effects of these two MAbs on different markers of disease severity using the murine model of RSV infection. BALB/c mice were intranasally inoculated with RSV A2. Palivizumab or MEDI-524 was administered once at either 24 h before or 48 h after RSV inoculation. Regardless of the time of administration, all treated mice showed significantly decreased RSV loads in bronchoalveolar lavage samples measured by plaque assay. Only MEDI-524 given at −24 h significantly decreased lung RSV RNA loads on days 5 and 28 after RSV inoculation. Pulmonary histopathologic scores, airway obstruction, and postmethacholine airway hyperresponsiveness were significantly reduced in mice treated with MEDI-524 at 24 h before inoculation, compared with untreated controls and the other regimens evaluated. MEDI-524 was superior to palivizumab on several outcome variables of RSV disease assessed in the mouse model: viral replication, inflammatory and clinical markers of acute disease severity, and long-term pulmonary abnormalities.
Early-life respiratory viral infections, notably with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), increase the risk of subsequent development of childhood asthma. The purpose of this study was to assess whether early-life infection with a species-specific model of RSV and subsequent allergen exposure predisposed to the development of features of asthma.
We employed a unique combination of animal models in which BALB/c mice were neonatally infected with pneumonia virus of mice (PVM, which replicates severe RSV disease in human infants) and following recovery, were intranasally sensitised with ovalbumin. Animals received low-level challenge with aerosolised antigen for 4 weeks to elicit changes of chronic asthma, followed by a single moderate-level challenge to induce an exacerbation of inflammation. We then assessed airway inflammation, epithelial changes characteristic of remodelling, airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and host immunological responses.
Allergic airway inflammation, including recruitment of eosinophils, was prominent only in animals that had recovered from neonatal infection with PVM and then been sensitised and chronically challenged with antigen. Furthermore, only these mice exhibited an augmented Th2-biased immune response, including elevated serum levels of anti-ovalbumin IgE and IgG1 as well as increased relative expression of Th2-associated cytokines IL-4, IL-5 and IL-13. By comparison, development of AHR and mucous cell change were associated with recovery from PVM infection, regardless of subsequent allergen challenge. Increased expression of IL-25, which could contribute to induction of a Th2 response, was demonstrable in the lung following PVM infection. Signalling via the IL-4 receptor α chain was crucial to the development of allergic inflammation, mucous cell change and AHR, because all of these were absent in receptor-deficient mice. In contrast, changes of remodelling were evident in mice that received chronic allergen challenge, regardless of neonatal PVM infection, and were not dependent on signalling via the IL-4 receptor.
In this mouse model, interaction between early-life viral infection and allergen sensitisation/challenge is essential for development of the characteristic features of childhood asthma, including allergic inflammation and a Th2-biased immune response.
Severe respiratory syncytial virus infection (RSV) during infancy has been shown to be a major risk factor for the development of subsequent wheeze. However, the reasons for this link remain unclear. The objective of this research was to determine the consequences of early exposure to RSV and allergen in the development of subsequent airway hyperreactivity (AHR) using a developmental time point in the mouse that parallels that of the human neonate.
Weanling mice were sensitized and challenged with ovalbumin (Ova) and/or infected with RSV. Eight days after the last allergen challenge, various pathophysiological endpoints were examined.
AHR in response to methacholine was enhanced only in weanling mice exposed to Ova and subsequently infected with RSV. The increase in AHR appeared to be unrelated to pulmonary RSV titer. Total bronchoalveolar lavage cellularity in these mice increased approximately two-fold relative to Ova alone and was attributable to increases in eosinophil and lymphocyte numbers. Enhanced pulmonary pathologies including persistent mucus production and subepithelial fibrosis were observed. Interestingly, these data correlated with transient increases in TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-5, and IL-2.
The observed changes in pulmonary structure may provide an explanation for epidemiological data suggesting that early exposure to allergens and RSV have long-term physiological consequences. Furthermore, the data presented here highlight the importance of preventative strategies against RSV infection of atopic individuals during neonatal development.
respiratory syncytial virus; pulmonary; inflammation; age factors; asthma; mice
Mice sensitized to the G (attachment) or F (fusion) glycoproteins of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) expressed different patterns of cytokine production and lung pathology when challenged by intranasal infection with RSV. Five days after challenge, mice sensitized to G glycoprotein produced high levels of interleukin-4 (IL-4) and IL-5 in the lungs and spleens and developed extensive pulmonary eosinophilia, while mice sensitized to F glycoprotein produced IL-2 and developed a mononuclear cell infiltration. Memory lymphocytes isolated 2 weeks after intranasal challenge of mice primed to the G or F glycoprotein secreted only IL-2 and gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) when stimulated with RSV. IL-4 and IL-5 production characteristic of Th2-type effectors in the lung was observed only after multiple rounds of in vitro stimulation of RSV G-specific memory T lymphocytes with antigen. Also IFN-gamma production appeared to play only a minor role in the expression of pulmonary pathology characteristic of Th1 or Th2 T-lymphocyte responses, because mice genetically deficient in IFN-gamma production by gene disruption displayed the same pattern of pulmonary inflammation to RSV infection after priming to RSV F or G as conventional mice. These results suggest that effector T lymphocytes exhibit a different pattern of cytokine production than memory T-lymphocyte precursors precommitted to a Th1 or Th2 pattern of differentiation. Furthermore, these observations raise the possibility that the cytokine response of human memory T lymphocytes after a single exposure to antigen in vitro may not accurately reflect the cytokine response of differentiated effector T lymphocytes at the site of infection in vivo.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a major cause of lower respiratory tract infections in infants and the elderly. While the primary infection is the most serious, reinfection of the upper airway throughout life is the rule. Although relatively little is known about either RSV infection of the upper respiratory tract or host mucosal immunity to RSV, recent literature suggests that RSV is the predominant viral pathogen predisposing to bacterial otitis media (OM). Herein, we describe mouse and chinchilla models of RSV infection of the nasopharynx and Eustachian tube. Both rodent hosts were susceptible to RSV infection of the upper airway following intranasal challenge; however, the chinchilla proved to be more permissive than the mouse. The chinchilla model will likely be extremely useful to test the role of RSV in bacterial OM and the efficacy of RSV vaccine candidates designed to provide mucosal and cytotoxic T-lymphocyte immunity. Ultimately, we hope to investigate the relative ability of these candidates to potentially protect against viral predisposal to bacterial OM.
Numerous studies have described a strong association between respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection in infancy and the development of recurrent wheezing and airway hyperresponsiveness. We evaluated the effect of an anti-RSV neutralizing monoclonal antibody (palivizumab) on different aspects of RSV disease by using a murine model. BALB/c mice were intranasally inoculated with RSV A2. Palivizumab or an isotype-matched control antibody was administered once at 24 h before inoculation, 1 h after inoculation, or 48 h after inoculation. Regardless of the timing of administration, all mice treated with the neutralizing antibody showed significantly decreased RSV loads in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) and lung specimens compared with those of infected controls. Pulmonary histopathologic scores, airway obstruction measured by plethysmography, and airway hyperresponsiveness after methacholine challenge were significantly reduced in mice treated with the anti-RSV antibody 24 h before inoculation compared with those for untreated controls. Concentrations of interferon-gamma, interleukin-10, macrophage inflammatory protein 1α, regulated on activation normal T-cell expressed and secreted (RANTES), and eotaxin in BAL fluids were also significantly reduced in mice treated with palivizumab 24 h before inoculation. This study demonstrates that reduced RSV replication was associated with significant modulation of inflammatory and clinical markers of acute disease severity and significant improvement of the long-term pulmonary abnormalities. Studies to determine whether strategies aimed at preventing or reducing RSV replication could decrease the long-term morbidity associated with RSV infection in children should be considered.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a major cause of severe lower respiratory tract disease in infants and the elderly, but no safe and effective RSV vaccine is yet available. For reasons that are not well understood, RSV is only weakly immunogenic, and reinfection occurs throughout life. This has complicated the search for an effective live attenuated viral vaccine, and past trials with inactivated virus preparations have led to enhanced immunopathology following natural infection. We have tested the hypothesis that weak stimulation of innate immunity by RSV correlates with ineffective adaptive responses by asking whether expression of the fusion glycoprotein of RSV by Newcastle disease virus (NDV) would stimulate a more robust immune response to RSV than primary RSV infection. NDV is a potent inducer of both alpha/beta interferon (IFN-α/β) production and dendritic cell maturation, while RSV is not. When a recombinant NDV expressing the RSV fusion glycoprotein was administered to BALB/c mice, they were protected from RSV challenge, and this protection correlated with a robust anti-F CD8+ T-cell response. The effectiveness of this vaccine construct reflects the differential abilities of NDV and RSV to promote dendritic cell maturation and is retained even in the absence of a functional IFN-α/β receptor.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human metapneumovirus (hMPV) cause a similar spectrum of respiratory infections in humans. Classified within the Paramyxoviridae family, Pneumovirinae subfamily, RSV and hMPV present a significant degree of divergence in genome constellation, organization, and protein sequences. RSV has been reported to be a poor inducer of alpha/beta interferons (IFN-α/β) and partially resistant to its antiviral activity. The nature of the innate immune response to hMPV is currently unknown. Herein, an experimental mouse model was used to investigate the interplay between RSV and hMPV infections and IFN-α in the airways. RSV-infected BALB/c mice treated intranasally with either poly-ICLC, a potent inducer of IFN-α, or directly with recombinant IFN-α showed significantly reduced lung viral titers, inflammation, and clinical disease than untreated controls. However, RSV was significantly less sensitive to the antiviral activity of IFN-α than hMPV. Similarly, when the ability to directly induce IFN-α production was assessed, RSV was clearly a weaker inducer of IFN-α than hMPV, as shown by both kinetics and the absolute amount of IFN-α secreted into the bronchoalveolar lavage. To further investigate the putative inhibitory effect of these viruses on IFN-α production, mice were infected for 48 h prior to treatment with poly-ICLC or a specific Toll-like receptor 9 ligand, CpG oligodeoxynucleotides. Strikingly, both poly-ICLC- and CpG-mediated IFN-α production was abrogated by either RSV or MPV infection. These results suggest that a complex interplay between virus-specific and host-mediated responses regulates IFN-α in the lung during infection by members of the Pneumovirinae family.
Host defenses, while effecting viral clearance, contribute substantially to inflammation and disease. This double action is a substantial obstacle to the development of safe and effective vaccines against many agents, particularly respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). RSV is a common cold virus and the major cause of infantile bronchiolitis worldwide. The role of αβ T cells in RSV-driven immunopathology is well studied, but little is known about the role of “unconventional” T cells. During primary RSV challenge of BALB/c mice, some Vγ7+ γδ T cells were present; however, immunization with a live vaccinia vector expressing RSV F protein substantially enhanced Vγ4+ γδ T cell influx after RSV infection. Harvested early, these cells produced IFN-γ, TNF, and RANTES after ex vivo stimulation. By contrast, those recruited 5 days after challenge made IL-4, IL-5, and IL-10. Depletion of γδ T cells in vivo reduced lung inflammation and disease severity and slightly increased peak viral replication but did not prevent viral clearance. These studies demonstrate a novel role for γδ T cells in the development of immunopathology and cellular influx into the lungs after immunization and RSV challenge. Though a minor population, γδ T cells have a critical influence on disease and are an attractive interventional target in the alleviation of viral lung disease.
Background: Smooth muscle contraction is one of the hallmarks of asthma. A recently developed pyridine derivative, Y-27632, a selective Rho kinase inhibitor, has been reported to inhibit the smooth muscle contraction of human and animal trachea in ex vivo systems but its effect in animal models of airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) has not been examined. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of Y-27632 in a murine model of allergic and virally induced AHR.
Methods: Baseline lung resistance and methacholine induced AHR were measured in mice sensitised to ovalbumin (OVA) and also in mice infected with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) following ovalbumin sensitisation (OVA/RSV).
Results: Time course and dose ranging experiments indicated that 30 mg/kg Y-27632 given by gavage 2 hours before methacholine challenge significantly reduced baseline lung resistance and prevented AHR in OVA sensitised mice. Y-27632 also suppressed AHR induced by the bronchospastic agent serotonin in OVA sensitised mice and prevented methacholine induced AHR in OVA/RSV mice.
Conclusions: These results suggest that the signalling pathway mediated through Rho kinase may have an important role in bronchial smooth muscle tone in allergen induced and virus induced AHR and should be considered as a novel target for asthma treatment.
Background: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection can cause bronchial hyperresponsiveness and asthma exacerbations. In mice it results in airway inflammation and airway hyperresponsiveness. Since viral factors influencing these responses are not well defined, a study was undertaken to investigate the role of secreted G protein of human RSV in determining virulence, inflammatory responses, and changes in lung function.
Methods: BALB/c mice were infected with a spontaneous mutant of RSV deficient in secreted G protein (RSV-ΔsG) or with wild type RSV (RSV-WT). Viral titres, numbers of pulmonary inflammatory cells, and concentrations of interferon (IFN)-γ, interleukin (IL)-4, IL-5 and IL-10 in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid were determined. Airway function was assessed at baseline and following methacholine provocation using barometric whole body plethysmography.
Result: Following infection with RSV-ΔsG, viral titres were increased 50-fold compared with RSV-WT. Influx of eosinophils and macrophages to the lung and concentrations of IFN-γ and IL-10 in BAL fluid were also significantly higher following infection with RSV-ΔsG. Airway function, both at baseline and after methacholine provocation, was significantly decreased following infection with RSV-ΔsG compared with RSV-WT.
Conclusion: Secreted G protein is likely to be a regulatory factor in RSV infection limiting infectivity of the virus, inflammatory responses in the lungs, and reduction in lung function.
Viral respiratory infections can predispose to the development of asthma by mechanisms that are presently undetermined. Using a murine model of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection, acute infection is associated with airway hyperresponsiveness as well as enhanced responses to subsequent sensitization to allergen. We demonstrate that acute viral infection results in increased airway responsiveness to inhaled methacholine and pulmonary neutrophilic and eosinophilic inflammation. This response is associated with predominant production of Th-1-type cytokines in peribronchial lymph node cells in vitro. Mice sensitized to ovalbumin via the airways after RSV infection developed increased airway responsiveness to methacholine and pulmonary eosinophilic and neutrophilic inflammation, associated with the predominant production of Th-2-type cytokines. Treatment of the mice with anti-IL-5 antibody abolished airway hyperresponsiveness and eosinophilic but not neutrophilic inflammation in both acutely infected mice and mice sensitized after infection. We conclude that RSV infection results in airway hyperresponsiveness in the acute phase and leads to changes in immune function that can enhance the effects of airway sensitization to antigen after infection. In both situations, airway hyperresponsiveness is closely associated with pulmonary eosinophilic inflammation. This model provides a means for further analyzing the influence of viral respiratory infections on airway sensitization and the development of altered airway responsiveness.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the single most important cause of lower respiratory tract infection during infancy and early childhood. Once RSV infection is established, the host immune response includes the production of virus-neutralizing antibodies and T-cell-specific immunity. The humoral immune response normally results in the development of anti-RSV neutralizing-antibody titers, but these are often suboptimal during an infant’s initial infection. Even when the production of RSV neutralizing antibody following RSV infection is robust, humoral immunity wanes over time. Reinfection during subsequent seasons is common. The cellular immune response to RSV infection is also important for the clearance of virus. This immune response, vital for host defense against RSV, is also implicated in the immunopathogenesis of severe lower respiratory tract RSV bronchiolitis. Many details of the immunology and immunopathologic mechanisms of RSV disease known at present have been learned from rodent models of RSV disease and are discussed in some detail. In addition, the roles of immunoglobulin E, histamine, and eosinophils in the immunopathogenesis of RSV disease are considered. Although the treatment of RSV bronchiolitis is primarily supportive, the role of ribavirin is briefly discussed. Novel approaches to the development of new antiviral drugs with promising anti-RSV activity in vitro are also described.
Rationale: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a major cause of lower respiratory tract infection in children. No treatment has been shown to significantly improve the clinical outcome of patients with this infection. Recent evidence suggests that oxidative stress could play an important role in the pathogenesis of acute and chronic lung inflammatory diseases. We do not known whether RSV induces pulmonary oxidative stress and whether antioxidant treatment can modulate RSV-induced lung disease.
Objectives: To investigate the effect of antioxidant administration on RSV-induced lung inflammation, clinical disease, and airway hyperreactivity (AHR).
Methods: BALB/c mice were infected with 107 plaque-forming units of RSV, in the presence or absence of orally administered butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), an antioxidant. Malondialdehyde and 4-hydroxynonenal were measured in bronchoalveoar lavage (BAL) by colorimetric assay. Cytokines and chemokines were measured in BAL by Bio-Plex and leukotrienes were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. AHR to methacholine challenge was measured by whole-body plethysmography.
Results: BHA treatment significantly attenuated RSV-induced lung oxidative stress, as indicated by the decrease of malondialdehyde and 4-hydroxynonenal content in BAL of RSV-infected mice. RSV-induced clinical illness and body weight loss were also reduced by BHA treatment, which inhibited neutrophil recruitment to the lung and significantly reduced pulmonary cytokine and chemokine production after RSV infection. Similarly, antioxidant treatment attenuated RSV-induced AHR.
Conclusion: Modulation of oxidative stress represents a potential novel pharmacologic approach to ameliorate RSV-induced acute lung inflammation and potentially prevent long-term consequences associated with RSV infection, such as bronchial asthma.
antioxidant; chemokines; lung inflammation; oxidative stress; respiratory syncytial virus
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human metapneumovirus (hMPV) are common causes of respiratory infections in children. Diseases caused by hMPV are generally considered to be less severe than those caused by RSV; the underlying mechanisms, however, remain unknown. In the present study, the expressions of TLRs in airway epithelial cells and lungs of BALB/c mice infected by hMPV or RSV were measured in an attempt to explore the differences in the airway inflammation caused by the two viruses. Our results demonstrate that both hMPV and RSV infection upregulated the expressions of TLRs and inflammatory cytokines. Specifically, the TLR3 expression was revealed to be elevated in vitro and in mouse lungs. IFN-α produced by A549 cells after RSV or hMPV infection remained undistinguishable, whereas production of TNF-α was significantly higher after RSV infection than hMPV infection either in the presence or absence of Poly I:C. This study provides a clue that more severe clinical syndrome of RSV infection may be due to the greater magnitude of induction of airway inflammation by RSV involving TLR3 activation and production of TNF-α.