Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Avian Influenza Virus In Mammals Spreads Beyond The Site Of Infection To Other Organ Systems

Date:
January 14, 2006
Source:
American Journal of Pathology
Summary:
Researchers at Erasmus Medical Center have demonstrated systemic spread of avian influenza virus in cats infected by respiratory, digestive, and cat-to-cat contact. The paper by Rimmelzwaan et al., "Influenza A virus infection in cats causes systemic disease with potential novel routes of virus spread within and between hosts," appears in the January issue of The American Journal of Pathology and is accompanied by a commentary.

Researchers at Erasmus Medical Center have demonstrated systemic spread of avian influenza virus in cats infected by respiratory, digestive, and cat-to-cat contact. The paper by Rimmelzwaan et al., "Influenza A virus (H5N1) infection in cats causes systemic disease with potential novel routes of virus spread within and between hosts," appears in the January issue of The American Journal of Pathology and is accompanied by a commentary.

Related Articles


Avian influenza (H5N1) is of great concern because of the current outbreaks in Asia and the potential for pandemic spread. This virus is highly contagious in birds and spreads easily due to the agricultural and migratory nature of the bird species infected, including poultry, water fowl, and other migratory species (See commentary by Brown for more information). While spread of avian influenza from bird to man is known to occur, as first reported during the 1997 Hong Kong outbreak, human-to-human spread is extremely rare. Thus, the disease events that take place during mammal-to-mammal spread are not well characterized.

To assess the spread of H5N1 influenza virus in mammalian hosts, Rimmelzwaan et al. examined cats infected via the respiratory tract, via the digestive tract (by feeding on infected chicks), or by close contact with respiratory-infected cats. The researchers, led by Dr. Thijs Kuiken, then examined mucous membranes (throat, nasal, and rectal swabs) and organ systems (respiratory, digestive, nervous, cardiovascular, urinary, lymphoid, and endocrine) for the presence of virus and viral protein.

As expected, all cats were infected with H5N1 virus and exhibited clinical signs of disease (fever, lethargy, labored breathing, etc.), and virus was detected in throat, nasal, and rectal swabs, regardless of the original site of infection. Most interesting, virus spread throughout the organ systems with virus being found in respiratory and digestive tracts, liver, kidney, heart, brain, and lymph nodes. Furthermore, examination of infected tissues revealed cellular damage at sites containing viral proteins, providing an explanation for the increased severity of disease in humans.

These data underscore the potential for influenza virus to spread not only from the respiratory tract but also from the digestive and urinary tracts, greatly increasing the possible routes of mammalian transmission. Systemic disease has long been known to occur in birds, with the fecal-oral route of transmission being most important. However, this is the first demonstration of systemic replication in cats, providing a cautionary tale for humans regarding how influenza is spread and how the disease presents itself.

Rimmelzwaan and colleagues caution that because of the systemic nature of avian influenza, "H5N1 virus infection needs to be included in the differential diagnosis of a broader range of clinical presentations than is currently done." In addition better understanding of the mechanisms of spread, including possible fecal-oral route in humans, "may limit the risk of H5N1 virus developing into a pandemic influenza virus."

###

This work was performed at the Department of Virology, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, and was supported by a Novaflu EU grant.

Rimmelzwaan GF, van Riel D, Baars M, Bestebroer TM, van Amerongen G, Fouchier RAM, Osterhaus ADME, and Kuiken T: Influenza A virus (H5N1) infection in cats causes systemic disease with potential novel routes of virus spread within and between hosts. Am J Pathol 2006 168: 176-183.

Commentary: Brown C: Avian influenza: Virchow's reminder. Am J Pathol 2006 168: 6-8.

The American Journal of Pathology, the official journal of the American Society for Investigative Pathology (ASIP), seeks to publish high-quality original papers on the cellular and molecular mechanisms of disease. The editors accept manuscripts which report important findings on disease pathogenesis or basic biological mechanisms that relate to disease, without preference for a specific method of analysis. High priority is given to studies on human disease and relevant experimental models using cellular, molecular, biological, animal, chemical and immunological approaches in conjunction with morphology.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Journal of Pathology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Journal of Pathology. "Avian Influenza Virus In Mammals Spreads Beyond The Site Of Infection To Other Organ Systems." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 January 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/01/060114232431.htm>.
American Journal of Pathology. (2006, January 14). Avian Influenza Virus In Mammals Spreads Beyond The Site Of Infection To Other Organ Systems. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/01/060114232431.htm
American Journal of Pathology. "Avian Influenza Virus In Mammals Spreads Beyond The Site Of Infection To Other Organ Systems." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/01/060114232431.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A team of scientists led by Danish chemist Jorn Christensen says they have isolated two chemical compounds within an existing antipsychotic medication that could be used to help a range of failing antibiotics work against killer bacterial infections, such as Tuberculosis. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Monarch Butterflies Descend Upon Mexican Forest During Annual Migration

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Millions of monarch butterflies begin to descend onto Mexico as part of their annual migration south. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins