Immune derangement occurs in patients with H7N9 avian influenza

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Introduction: Currently, little is known about the immunological characteristics of patients with avian influenza A (H7N9) virus infection.Methods: The numbers and percentages of peripheral blood immune cells were measured in 27 patients with laboratory-confirmed H7N9 virus infection and 30 healthy controls (HCs). The functional phenotypes of T cells and monocytes, as well as serum cytokine levels, were analyzed by flow cytometry.Results: There were 19 patients (70.4%) with acute respiratory distress syndrome, 13 (48.1%) with secondary respiratory infection, 20 (74%) with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS; defined as having at least two concurrent SIRS components), 18 (66.7%) with lymphocytopenia and 11 (40.7%) with reduced numbers of monocytes. In comparison with levels in the HCs, the levels of serum interleukin 6 (IL-6), IL-8 and IL-10 and the percentages of CD38+ or Tim-3+ T cells were significantly increased. However, the percentages of human leukocyte antigen-DR + and Tim-3+ monocytes were significantly decreased in patients compared with HCs.Conclusions: Patients with avian H7N9 virus infection display profound SIRS concomitantly with an anti-inflammatory response, which may be associated with the rapid progression of and high mortality associated with this novel viral disease. © 2014 Wu et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.




Wu, W., Shi, Y., Gao, H., Liang, W., Sheng, J., & Li, L. (2014). Immune derangement occurs in patients with H7N9 avian influenza. Critical Care, 18(2).

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