The ability of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) to induce interferon production by human mononuclear leukocytes was compared with that of influenza viruses. Cell culture fluids were assayed for interferon activity 1, 3, and 7 days after exposure to RSV or to one of two subtypes of influenza A virus (H0N1 and H3N2). RSV induced interferon production inconsistently and in low titers. Varying the multiplicity of infection did not improve the ability of RSV to induce interferon production. In contrast, influenza viruses were effective inducers of interferon production. Seropositivity to the influenza virus strains was not associated with increased interferon titers. Interferon produced after exposure to RSV or to the influenza viruses was resistant to low pH treatment. The data suggest that interferon production may not be a major component of human immunological defense against RSV infection.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases