Research press release


Nature Medicine

Mechanism underlying 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic


2009年の新型インフルエンザの大流行では、重い症例の年齢構成が独特だった。普通はインフルエンザウイルスは、高齢者や小児のように免疫系の弱い人のほうが感染しやすい。F Polackたちは、17歳から57歳の成人にみられた重い症例の原因は、季節性インフルエンザウイルスに対する既存の抗体がH1N1ウイルスに交差反応したためであることを発見した。この既存の抗体はH1N1ウイルスに対する防御効果はないが、免疫複合体が介在する病気に関係があり、抗体とウイルスタンパク質の凝集物が腎臓や肺などの臓器に蓄積して、インフルエンザ感染後の合併症に結びつく。


The mechanism by which the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus caused more severe disease manifestation in middle-aged adults than elderly or young children is reported in this week’s issue of Nature Medicine.

The age distribution of severe cases of disease during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic was unusual since influenza viruses typically affect those with weaker immune systems — such as elderly and young children. Fernando Polack and colleague found severe cases in middle-aged adults — between 17 and 57 years of age — were caused when pre-existing antibodies against seasonal strains of influenza cross-reacted with the H1N1 strain. These antibodies do not protect against H1N1 but are associated with immune complex-mediated disease, whereby an aggregate of antibodies and viral proteins accumulate in organs, such as the kidneys or lung, leading to post-infection illness.

The team compared lung samples from middle-aged patients who died from the H1N1 virus to fatal cases from the 1957 H2N2 influenza, and found that that the mechanisms of immune complex disease were similar in both cases.

doi: 10.1038/nm.2262


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