Reverse genetics of influenza viruses.
ABSTRACT The ability to modify influenza viruses at will has revolutionized influenza research. Reverse genetics has been used to generate mutant or reassortant influenza viruses to assess their replication, virulence, pathogenicity, host range, and transmissibility. Moreover, this technology is now being used to generate approved influenza virus vaccines and develop novel vaccines to combat seasonal and (future) pandemic influenza viruses. Several variations of the original system have been established, all of which are considerably robust and efficient.