Immunization with heterologous flaviviruses protective against fatal west Nile encephalitis

Robert B. Tesh, Amelia P.A. Travassos da Rosa, Hilda Guzman, Tais P. Araujo, Shu Yuan Xiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

162 Scopus citations


Prior immunization of hamsters with three heterologous fiaviviruses (Japanese encephalitis virus [JEV] SA14-2-8 vaccine, wild-type St. Louis encephalitis virus [SLEV], and Yellow fever virus [YFV] 17D vaccine) reduces the severity of subsequent West Nile virus (WNV) infection. Groups of adult hamsters were immunized with each of the heterologous flaviviruses; approximately 30 days later, the animals were injected intraperitoneally with a virulent New York strain of WNV. Subsequent levels of viremia, antibody response, and deaths were compared with those in nonimmune (control) hamsters. Immunity to JEV and SLEV was protective against clinical encephalitis and death after challenge with WNV. The antibody response in the sequentially infected hamsters also illustrates the difficulty in making a serologic diagnosis of WNV infection in animals (or humans) with preexisting Flavivirus immunity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-251
Number of pages7
JournalEmerging infectious diseases
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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