ZIka virus and cytokines

Dennis Tappe and other researchers have published an article together, which named Cytokine kinetics of Zika virus‑infected patients from acute to reconvalescent phase. In this article, they pay attention to immunology of Zika virus disease. Those research result aim at use for clinical follow-up of patients. Analysis of serum cytokine levels of travel-associated infections and demonstration of cytokine concentration changes in acute and recovery (reconvalescent) sera have been down. They can suggest that strong and multifunctional T cell responses are required for recovery from ZIKV infection.

Cytokines in Zika virus infection acute phase

In the acute phase of Zika virus fever, significant concentration elevations were found for interleukin (IL)-1b, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-9, IL-10, IL-13, IL-17, as well as for interferon-γ-induced protein 10 (IP-10), regulated on activation, normal T cell expressed and secreted (RANTES), macrophage inflammatory protein 1 alpha (MIP-1a) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), when compared to normal controls.

Cytokines in Zika virus infection recovery phase

In the recovery phase of Zika virus fever, significant increases were demonstrated in the levels of IL-1b, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-13, as well as of IP-10, RANTES, MIP-1a, MIP-1b, and VEGF, fibroblast growth factor (FGF), granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF), in comparison with healthy controls.

Other cytokines in both Zika virus infection phases

Interferon-γ (IFN-γ) levels showed an increasing trend in the acute and recovery phase (non-significant), whereas tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) concentrations only showed a median increase during the acute phase (also non-significant). Many of the cytokines and factors that were elevated in the acute phase showed a tendency to return to normal levels in the later recovery phase.

Figures below can illustrate those points.

Zika virus cytkoines

They are changes in cytokine levels in the acute and recovery phase of Zika fever. With the exception of IL-8, significant elevations of the serum interleukin concentrations are evident in the early, acute phase of Zika fever. In the recovery phase, IL-1b, IL-8, and IL-10 levels were higher than in the acute phase, whereas levels of the other depicted cytokines were declining.

They are changes in cytokine and growth factor levels in the acute and recovery phase of Zika fever. RANTES, MIP-1a, and VEGF levels were higher in the acute than in the recovery phase, whereas IP-10, MIP-1b, and GM-CSF reached higher concentrations in the recovery phase than during acute infection. IFN-γ levels showed a non-significant, however, increasing trend over the course of infection, whereas TNF-α concentrations only displayed a non-significant median increase in the acute phase.

In this study, elevation of chemokines was more pronounced than elevation of cytokines. In the recovery phase, cytokine levels generally decreased. A polyfunctional immune activation was seen during the acute phase of Zika virus fever, as reflected by elevated cytokine profiles associated with Th1 (IL-2, and non-significantly IFN-γ), Th2 (IL-4, IL-13), Th17 (IL-17), and also Th9 (IL-9) responses.