How does the Zika virus prevent immune responses against itself?

From the Medical News Bulletin
November 7, 2018

When the immune system first comes into contact with a virus, it generates responses in an attempt to identify and eliminate the threat. In order to avoid detection and an immune response against them, many viruses attack immune cells such as specialized white blood cells called macrophages. The Zika virus, of particular concern as it can lead to birth defects, has been shown to employ this strategy. However, the method by which the Zika virus affects macrophages and escapes immune responses is not well understood. An improved understanding could lead to more effective methods of treatment and prevention of Zika virus disease.

In a recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers explored the effects of Zika virus infection on macrophages and immune responses. Macrophages were exposed to the Zika virus with or without antibodies for the Dengue virus, which increases chances of Zika infection.

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