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Publications (3)15.47 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome is a zoonotic illness associated with a systemic inflammatory immune response, capillary leak, noncardiogenic pulmonary edema, and shock in humans. Cytokines, including TNF, IFN-gamma, and lymphotoxin, are thought to contribute to its pathogenesis. In contrast, infected rodent reservoirs of hantaviruses experience few or no pathologic changes and the host rodent can remain persistently infected for life. Generally, it is unknown why such dichotomous immune responses occur between humans and reservoir hosts. Thus, we examined CD4(+) T cell responses from one such reservoir, the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), infected with Sin Nombre virus. Proliferation responses to viral nucleocapsid antigen were relatively weak in T cells isolated from deer mice, regardless of acute or persistent infection. The T cells from acutely infected deer mice synthesized a broad spectrum of cytokines, including IFN-gamma, IL-4, IL-5, and TGF-beta(1), but not TNF, lymphotoxin, or IL-17. However, in T cells from persistently infected deer mice, only TGF-beta(1) was expressed by all lines, whereas some expressed reduced levels of IFN-gamma or IL-5. The Forkhead box P3 transcription factor, a marker of some regulatory T cells, was expressed by most of these cells. Collectively, these data suggest that TGF-beta(1)-expressing regulatory T cells may play an important role in limiting immunopathology in the natural reservoir host, but this response may interfere with viral clearance. Such a response may have arisen as a mutually beneficial coadaptive evolutionary event between hantaviruses and their rodent reservoirs, so as to limit disease while also allowing the virus to persist.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 10/2007; 104(39):15496-501. · 9.81 Impact Factor
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    Rafael A Medina, Katy Mirowsky-Garcia, Julie Hutt, Brian Hjelle
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    ABSTRACT: The New World hantavirus Sin Nombre virus (SNV) is an aetiological agent for the often-fatal hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome (HCPS). There is no disease model for SNV and specific treatments for HCPS do not exist. By using the deer mouse infectious model, the in vivo inhibitory potential of ribavirin, human anti-SNV immune plasma (HIP), an anti-beta3 antibody (ReoPro) and a polyclonal rabbit anti-recombinant nucleocapsid (N) antibody against SNV was investigated. Concurrent intraperitoneal administration of 100 mg ribavirin kg(-1) prevented seroconversion in all mice at day 15 post-inoculation (p.i.). No evidence of infection was detectable by immunohistochemical staining or by quantitative RT-PCR in two of these six mice. Lower doses of ribavirin, between 5 and 50 mg kg(-1), were much less effective at inhibiting infection. Mice given 200 microl aliquots of dilutions as high as 1 : 20 of HIP (neutralizing-antibody titre 800) failed to seroconvert by day 15 p.i. SNV N antigen staining and viral S genome were undetectable in these mice. A subset of mice given higher dilutions of HIP became infected. Treatment with 6 mg ReoPro kg(-1) did not prevent seroconversion, but was able to reduce viral load. Mice treated with 200 microl anti-N antibody or negative human plasma seroconverted when challenged with SNV, and antigen staining and viral loads were comparable to those seen in untreated controls. These results show that ReoPro can lower viral loads and that ribavirin and HIP, but not anti-N antibody, inhibit seroconversion and reduce viral loads in a dose-dependent manner.
    Journal of General Virology 03/2007; 88(Pt 2):493-505. · 3.13 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: An IgG avidity assay was developed to differentiate deer mice that had recently acquired Sin Nombre virus (SNV) from those that were infected in the distant past. Using this procedure, low avidity antibodies were predominantly detected in experimentally infected deer mice (89.5%) within the first 30 days post-inoculation. The assay was then applied to sera from naturally infected deer mice collected during a field investigation associated with a cluster of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome cases. A higher proportion of seropositive mice collected during the outbreak had serum with low avidity antibodies (16.7%) when compared with mice trapped four months later (5.7%). Sin Nombre virus RNA was detectable in blood in a similar fraction of low- (45%) and high- (38.7%) avidity groups. Non-adult mice were more likely to contain low-avidity antibodies (44.4%) than were adults (9.6%). Our results indicate that the IgG avidity assay shows promise as a tool to better characterize epizootic intensity and to identify factors involved in SNV transmission.
    The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene 01/2007; 75(6):1135-9. · 2.53 Impact Factor