A treatment for and vaccine against the deadly Hendra and Nipah viruses

Christopher C. Broder, Kai Xu, Dimitar B. Nikolov, Zhongyu Zhu, Dimiter S. Dimitrov, Deborah Middleton, Jackie Pallister, Thomas W. Geisbert, Katharine N. Bossart, Lin Fa Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


Hendra virus and Nipah virus are bat-borne paramyxoviruses that are the prototypic members of the genus Henipavirus. The henipaviruses emerged in the 1990s, spilling over from their natural bat hosts and causing serious disease outbreaks in humans and livestock. Hendra virus emerged in Australia and since 1994 there have been 7 human infections with 4 case fatalities. Nipah virus first appeared in Malaysia and subsequent outbreaks have occurred in Bangladesh and India. In total, there have been an estimated 582 human cases of Nipah virus and of these, 54% were fatal. Their broad species tropism and ability to cause fatal respiratory and/or neurologic disease in humans and animals make them important transboundary biological threats. Recent experimental findings in animals have demonstrated that a human monoclonal antibody targeting the viral G glycoprotein is an effective post-exposure treatment against Hendra and Nipah virus infection. In addition, a subunit vaccine based on the G glycoprotein of Hendra virus affords protection against Hendra and Nipah virus challenge. The vaccine has been developed for use in horses in Australia and is the first vaccine against a Biosafety Level-4 (BSL-4) agent to be licensed and commercially deployed. Together, these advances offer viable approaches to address Hendra and Nipah virus infection of livestock and people.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8-13
Number of pages6
JournalAntiviral research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2013


  • G glycoprotein
  • Hendra virus
  • Horse
  • Monoclonal antibody
  • Nipah virus
  • Vaccine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Virology


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