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Pulmonary susceptibility of neonates to respiratory syncytial virus infection: a problem of innate immunity?

Abstract : Human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common and highly contagious viral agent responsible for acute lower respiratory infection in infants. This pathology characterized by mucus hypersecretion and a disturbed T cell immune response is one of the major causes of infant hospitalization for severe bronchiolitis. Although different risk factors are associated with acute RSV bronchiolitis, the immunological factors contributing to the susceptibility of RSV infection in infants are not clearly elucidated. Epidemiological studies have established that the age at initial infection plays a central role in the severity of the disease. Thus, neonatal susceptibility is intrinsically linked to the immunological characteristics of the young pulmonary mucosa. Early life is a critical period for the lung development with the first expositions to external environmental stimuli and microbiota colonization. Furthermore, neonates display a lung immune system that profoundly differs to those from adults, with the predominance of type 2 immune cells. In this review, we discuss the latest information about the lung immune environment in the early period of life at a steady state and upon RSV infection and how we can modulate neonatal susceptibility to RSV infection.
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Carole Drajac, Daphnée Laubreton, Sabine Riffault, Delphyne Descamps. Pulmonary susceptibility of neonates to respiratory syncytial virus infection: a problem of innate immunity?. Journal of Immunology Research, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2017, ⟨10.1155/2017/8734504⟩. ⟨hal-02628884⟩

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