All Publications

  • Rotavirus Structural Proteins and dsRNA Are Required for the Human Primary Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cell IFN alpha Response PLOS PATHOGENS Deal, E. M., Jaimes, M. C., Crawford, S. E., Estes, M. K., Greenberg, H. B. 2010; 6 (6)


    Rotaviruses are the leading cause of severe dehydrating diarrhea in children worldwide. Rotavirus-induced immune responses, especially the T and B cell responses, have been extensively characterized; however, little is known about innate immune mechanisms involved in the control of rotavirus infection. Although increased levels of systemic type I interferon (IFNalpha and beta) correlate with accelerated resolution of rotavirus disease, multiple rotavirus strains, including rhesus rotavirus (RRV), have been demonstrated to antagonize type I IFN production in a variety of epithelial and fibroblast cell types through several mechanisms, including degradation of multiple interferon regulatory factors by a viral nonstructural protein. This report demonstrates that stimulation of highly purified primary human peripheral plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) with either live or inactivated RRV induces substantial IFNalpha production by a subset of pDCs in which RRV does not replicate. Characterization of pDC responses to viral stimulus by flow cytometry and Luminex revealed that RRV replicates in a small subset of human primary pDCs and, in this RRV-permissive small subset, IFNalpha production is diminished. pDC activation and maturation were observed independently of viral replication and were enhanced in cells in which virus replicates. Production of IFNalpha by pDCs following RRV exposure required viral dsRNA and surface proteins, but neither viral replication nor activation by trypsin cleavage of VP4. These results demonstrate that a minor subset of purified primary human peripheral pDCs are permissive to RRV infection, and that pDCs retain functionality following RRV stimulus. Additionally, this study demonstrates trypsin-independent infection of primary peripheral cells by rotavirus, which may allow for the establishment of extraintestinal viremia and antigenemia. Importantly, these data provide the first evidence of IFNalpha induction in primary human pDCs by a dsRNA virus, while simultaneously demonstrating impaired IFNalpha production in primary human cells in which RRV replicates. Rotavirus infection of primary human pDCs provides a powerful experimental system for the study of mechanisms underlying pDC-mediated innate immunity to viral infection and reveals a potentially novel dsRNA-dependent pathway of IFNalpha induction.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.ppat.1000931

    View details for Web of Science ID 000279806300009

    View details for PubMedID 20532161

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2880586

  • Variation in Antagonism of the Interferon Response to Rotavirus NSP1 Results in Differential Infectivity in Mouse Embryonic Fibroblasts JOURNAL OF VIROLOGY Feng, N., Sen, A., Nguyen, H., Vo, P., Hoshino, Y., Deal, E. M., Greenberg, H. B. 2009; 83 (14): 6987-6994


    Rotavirus NSP1 has been shown to function as an E3 ubiquitin ligase that mediates proteasome-dependent degradation of interferon (IFN) regulatory factors (IRF), including IRF3, -5, and -7, and suppresses the cellular type I IFN response. However, the effect of rotavirus NSP1 on viral replication is not well defined. Prior studies used genetic analysis of selected reassortants to link NSP1 with host range restriction in the mouse, suggesting that homologous and heterologous rotaviruses might use their different abilities to antagonize the IFN response as the basis of their host tropisms. Using a mouse embryonic fibroblast (MEF) model, we demonstrate that heterologous bovine (UK and NCDV) and porcine (OSU) rotaviruses fail to effectively degrade cellular IRF3, resulting in IRF3 activation and beta IFN (IFN-beta) secretion. As a consequence of this failure, replication of these viruses is severely restricted in IFN-competent wild-type, but not in IFN-deficient (IFN-alpha/beta/gamma receptor- or STAT1-deficient) MEFs. On the other hand, homologous murine rotaviruses (ETD or EHP) or the heterologous simian rotavirus (rhesus rotavirus [RRV]) efficiently degrade cellular IRF3, diminish IRF3 activation and IFN-beta secretion and are not replication restricted in wild-type MEFs. Genetic reassortant analysis between UK and RRV maps the distinctive phenotypes of IFN antagonism and growth restriction in wild-type MEFs to NSP1. Therefore, there is a direct relationship between the replication efficiencies of different rotavirus strains in MEFs and strain-related variations in NSP1-mediated antagonism of the type I IFN response.

    View details for DOI 10.1128/JVI.00585-09

    View details for Web of Science ID 000267354300003

    View details for PubMedID 19420080

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC2704795

  • Filovirus infections. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association Warfield, K. L., Deal, E. M., Bavari, S. 2009; 234 (9): 1130-1139

    View details for DOI 10.2460/javma.234.9.1130

    View details for PubMedID 19405883

  • Induction of humoral and CD8(+) T cell responses are required for protection against lethal Ebola virus infection JOURNAL OF IMMUNOLOGY Warfield, K. L., Olinger, G., Deal, E. M., Swenson, D. L., Bailey, M., Negley, D. L., Hart, M. K., Bavari, S. 2005; 175 (2): 1184-1191


    Ebola virus (EBOV)-like particles (eVLP), composed of the EBOV glycoprotein and matrix viral protein (VP)40 with a lipid membrane, are a highly efficacious method of immunization against EBOV infection. The exact requirements for immunity against EBOV infection are poorly defined at this time. The goal of this work was to determine the requirements for EBOV immunity following eVLP vaccination. Vaccination of BALB/c or C57BL/6 mice with eVLPs in conjunction with QS-21 adjuvant resulted in mixed IgG subclass responses, a Th1-like memory cytokine response, and protection from lethal EBOV challenge. Further, this vaccination schedule led to the generation of both CD4(+) and CD8(+) IFN-gamma(+) T cells recognizing specific peptides within glycoprotein and VP40. The transfer of both serum and splenocytes, but not serum or splenocytes alone, from eVLP-vaccinated mice conferred protection against lethal EBOV infection in these studies. B cells were required for eVLP-mediated immunity to EBOV because B cell-deficient mice vaccinated with eVLPs were not protected from lethal EBOV challenge. We also found that CD8(+), but not CD4(+), T cells are absolutely required for eVLP-mediated protection against EBOV infection. Further, eVLP-induced protective mechanisms were perforin-independent, but IFN-gamma-dependent. Taken together, both EBOV-specific humoral and cytotoxic CD8(+) T cell responses are critical to mediate protection against filoviruses following eVLP vaccination.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000233647600065

    View details for PubMedID 16002721

  • Role of natural killer cells in innate protection against lethal Ebola virus infection JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL MEDICINE Warfield, K. L., Perkins, J. G., Swenson, D. L., Deal, E. M., Bosio, C. M., Aman, M. J., Yokoyama, W. M., Young, H. A., Bavari, S. 2004; 200 (2): 169-179


    Ebola virus is a highly lethal human pathogen and is rapidly driving many wild primate populations toward extinction. Several lines of evidence suggest that innate, nonspecific host factors are potentially critical for survival after Ebola virus infection. Here, we show that nonreplicating Ebola virus-like particles (VLPs), containing the glycoprotein (GP) and matrix protein virus protein (VP)40, administered 1-3 d before Ebola virus infection rapidly induced protective immunity. VLP injection enhanced the numbers of natural killer (NK) cells in lymphoid tissues. In contrast to live Ebola virus, VLP treatment of NK cells enhanced cytokine secretion and cytolytic activity against NK-sensitive targets. Unlike wild-type mice, treatment of NK-deficient or -depleted mice with VLPs had no protective effect against Ebola virus infection and NK cells treated with VLPs protected against Ebola virus infection when adoptively transferred to naive mice. The mechanism of NK cell-mediated protection clearly depended on perforin, but not interferon-gamma secretion. Particles containing only VP40 were sufficient to induce NK cell responses and provide protection from infection in the absence of the viral GP. These findings revealed a decisive role for NK cells during lethal Ebola virus infection. This work should open new doors for better understanding of Ebola virus pathogenesis and direct the development of immunotherapeutics, which target the innate immune system, for treatment of Ebola virus infection.

    View details for DOI 10.1084/jem.20032141

    View details for Web of Science ID 000222926000005

    View details for PubMedID 15249592

  • Ebola virus-like particles protect from lethal Ebola virus infection PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Warfield, K. L., Bosio, C. M., Welcher, B. C., Deal, E. M., Mohamadzadeh, M., Schmaljohn, A., Aman, M. J., Bavari, S. 2003; 100 (26): 15889-15894


    The filovirus Ebola causes hemorrhagic fever with 70-80% human mortality. High case-fatality rates, as well as known aerosol infectivity, make Ebola virus a potential global health threat and possible biological warfare agent. Development of an effective vaccine for use in natural outbreaks, response to biological attack, and protection of laboratory workers is a higher national priority than ever before. Coexpression of the Ebola virus glycoprotein (GP) and matrix protein (VP40) in mammalian cells results in spontaneous production and release of virus-like particles (VLPs) that resemble the distinctively filamentous infectious virions. VLPs have been tested and found efficacious as vaccines for several viruses, including papillomavirus, HIV, parvovirus, and rotavirus. Herein, we report that Ebola VLPs (eVLPs) were immunogenic in vitro as eVLPs matured and activated mouse bone marrow-derived dendritic cells, assessed by increases in cell-surface markers CD40, CD80, CD86, and MHC class I and II and secretion of IL-6, IL-10, macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-1alpha, and tumor necrosis factor alpha by the dendritic cells. Further, vaccinating mice with eVLPs activated CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, as well as CD19+ B cells. After vaccination with eVLPs, mice developed high titers of Ebola virus-specific antibodies, including neutralizing antibodies. Importantly, mice vaccinated with eVLPs were 100% protected from an otherwise lethal Ebola virus inoculation. Together, our data suggest that eVLPs represent a promising vaccine candidate for protection against Ebola virus infections and a much needed tool to examine the genesis and nature of immune responses to Ebola virus.

    View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.2237038100

    View details for Web of Science ID 000187554600107

    View details for PubMedID 14673108