Exogenous IFN-alpha administration reduces influenza A virus replication in the lower respiratory tract of rhesus macaques.
- Author(s): Matzinger, Shannon R
- Carroll, Timothy D
- Fritts, Linda
- McChesney, Michael B
- Miller, Christopher J
- et al.
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0029255
To determine the role of innate immune responses in controlling influenza A virus replication, rhesus macaques (RM) were administered pegylated IFN-alpha prior to virus challenge. Systemic and mucosal pegylated IFN-alpha administration induced expression of the interferon-stimulated genes (ISG) MxA and OAS in the airways. RM treated with IFN-alpha 24 hours prior to influenza virus challenge had significantly lower peak vRNA levels in the trachea compared to untreated animals. In addition to blunting viral replication, IFN-alpha treatment minimized the weight loss and spike in body temperature after influenza infection of RM. These results confirm the importance of IFN-alpha induced innate immune responses in the rapid control of influenza A virus replication in primates.