Research Highlight

JE host response mapped

doi:10.1038/nindia.2011.37 Published online 16 March 2011

Researchers have been able to better explain the complex biological processes that take place when the Japanese encephalitis (JE) virus attacks a host cell. This could open up new avenues for diagnostic and therapeutic strategies against the virus.

Japanese encephalitis (JE) is one of the leading causes of acute encephalopathy or brain disorder. The researchers began by studying host response as disease progressed in the brain cells of experimental mice. They carried out a genome expression profile through the cDNA microarray technique and confirmed the active role of host cells in immune response and severity of the disease.

Histopathological analysis confirmed the severe damage in the brain cells in a time dependent manner. The researchers say the transcription profile revealed significant and differential expression of various pattern recognition receptors, chemotactic genes and activation of inflammasome. The increased leukocyte infiltration and aggravated inflammation of the central nervous system may be the cause of disease severity, they say.

The researchers claim that this is the first report providing a detailed picture of the host transcriptional response.


  1. Gupta, N. et al. Transcriptomic profile of host response in Japanese encephalitis virus infection. Virol. J. doi:  10.1186/1743-422X-8-92 (2011)