Ross River Virus Immune Evasion Strategies and the Relevance to Post-viral Fatigue, and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis Onset

Brett A. Lidbury*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Ross River virus (RRV) is an endemic Australian arbovirus, and member of the Alphavirus family that also includes Chikungunya virus (CHIK). RRV is responsible for the highest prevalence of human disease cases associated with mosquito-borne transmission in Australia, and has long been a leading suspect in cases of post-viral fatigue syndromes, with extrapolation of this link to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME). Research into RRV pathogenesis has revealed a number of immune evasion strategies, impressive for a virus with a genome size of 12 kb (plus strand RNA), which resonate with insights into viral pathogenesis broadly. Drawing from observations on RRV immune evasion, mechanisms of relevance to long term idiopathic fatigue are featured as a perspective on infection and eventual ME symptoms, which include considerations of; (1) selective pro-inflammatory gene suppression post antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) of RRV infection, (2) Evidence from other virus families of immune disruption and evasion post-ADE, and (3) how virally-driven immune evasion may impact on mitochondrial function via target of rapamycin (TOR) complexes. In light of these RRV measures to counter the host immune - inflammatory responses, links to recent discoveries explaining cellular, immune and metabolomic markers of ME will be explored and discussed, with the implications for long-COVID post SARS-CoV-2 also considered. Compelling issues on the connections between virally-induced alterations in cytokine expression, for example, will be of particular interest in light of energy pathways, and how these perturbations manifest clinically.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number662513
    JournalFrontiers in Medicine
    Volume8
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Mar 2021

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