Chemokines and their receptors are important elements for the selective attraction and activation of various subsets of leukocytes. Interferon-gamma inducible protein (IP-10 or CXCL-10) is a potent chemoattractant and has been suggested to enhance the severity of virus infection and neuronal injury. In order to assess functional importance of this chemokine in viral encephalitis, we have exploited an experimental model of Japanese encephalitis. We report for the first time that in Japanese encephalitis, astrocytes are the predominant source of IP-10. A progressive increase in IP-10 induction following viral infection is concomitant with the increase in IFN-γ a known inducer of IP-10. However, this increase in IFN-γ level is not sufficient to confer protection as animals eventually succumb to the infection.
- Japanese encephalitis
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