Virus research

Japanese encephalitis virus disrupts blood-brain barrier and modulates apoptosis proteins in THBMEC cells.

PMID 28279803


Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a neurotropic flavivirus that causes inflammation in central nervous system (CNS), neuronal death and also compromises the structural and functional integrity of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). The aim of this study was to evaluate the BBB disruption and apoptotic process in Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV)-infected transfected human brain microvascular endothelial cells (THBMECs). THBMECs were overlaid by JEV with different MOIs (0.5, 1.0, 5.0 and 10.0) and monitored by electrical cell-substrate impedance sensing (ECIS) in a real-time manner in order to observe the barrier function of THBMECs. Additionally, the level of 43 apoptotic proteins was quantified in the virally infected cells with different MOIs at 24h post infection. Infection of THBMEC with JEV induced an acute reduction in transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) after viral infection. Also, significant up-regulation of Bax, BID, Fas and Fasl and down-regulation of IGFBP-2, BID, p27 and p53 were observed in JEV infected THBMECs with 0.5 and 10 MOIs compared to uninfected cells. Hence, the permeability of THBMECs is compromised during the JEV infection. In addition high viral load of the virus has the potential to subvert the host cell apoptosis to optimize the course of viral infection through deactivation of pro-apoptotic proteins.