Animal models of dengue virus disease have been very difficult to develop because of the virus' specificity for infection and replication in certain human cells. We developed a model of dengue fever in immunodeficient mice transplanted with human stem cells from umbilical cord blood. These mice show measurable signs of dengue disease as in humans (fever, viremia, erythema and thrombocytopenia), and after infection with the most virulent strain of dengue serotype 2, humanized mice showed infection in human cells in bone marrow, spleen and blood. Cytokines and chemokines were secreted by these human cells into the mouse bloodstream. We demonstrated that the pathology of dengue virus infection in these mice follows that reported in human patients, making this the first valid and relevant model for studying dengue fever pathogenesis in humans.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)