Nipah Virus C and W Proteins Contribute to Respiratory Disease in Ferrets

Benjamin A. Satterfield, Robert W. Cross, Karla A. Fenton, Viktoriya Borisevich, Krystle N. Agans, Daniel J. Deer, Jessica Graber, Christopher F. Basler, Thomas W. Geisbert, Chad E. Mirea

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Nipah virus (NiV) is a highly lethal paramyxovirus that recently emerged as a causative agent of febrile encephalitis and severerespiratory disease in humans. The ferret model has emerged as the preferred small-animal model with which to study NiV disease,but much is still unknown about the viral determinants of NiV pathogenesis, including the contribution of the C protein inferrets. Additionally, studies have yet to examine the synergistic effects of the various P gene products on pathogenesis in animalmodels. Using recombinant NiVs (rNiVs), we examine the sole contribution of the NiV C protein and the combined contributionsof the C andWproteins in the ferret model of NiV pathogenesis. We show that an rNiV void of C expression resulted in100% mortality, though with limited respiratory disease, like our previously reported rNiV void ofWexpression; this finding isin stark contrast to the attenuated phenotype observed in previous hamster studies utilizing rNiVs void of C expression. We alsoobserved that an rNiV void of both C andWexpression resulted in limited respiratory disease; however, there was severe neurologicaldisease leading to 60% mortality, and the surviving ferrets demonstrated sequelae similar to those for human survivors ofNiV encephalitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6326-6343
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number14
StatePublished - 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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