Journal of Virology & Antiviral ResearchISSN: 2324-8955

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Research Article, J Virol Antivir Res Vol: 2 Issue: 1

Antigenic Complementarity between Influenza A Virus and Haemophilus influenzae may Drive Lethal Co-Infection Such as that Seen in 1918-19 Pandemic

Robert Root-Bernstein1*, Abigail Podufaly2 and Francesco Aimone3
1Department of Physiology, 2174 Biomedical and Physical Sciences Building,Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 USA
2College of Osteopathic Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 USA
3Department of Sociomedical Science, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, 722 West 168th Street, New York, New York, 10032, USA
Corresponding author : Robert Root-Bernstein
Department of Physiology, 2174 Biomedical and Physical Sciences Building, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 USA
Tel: 517-884-5039; Fax: 517-355-5125
E-mail: [email protected]
Received: January 16, 2013 Accepted: March 10, 2013 Published: March 15, 2013
Citation: Root-Bernstein R, Podufaly A, Aimone F (2013) Antigenic Complementarity between Influenza A Virus and Haemophilus influenzae may Drive Lethal Co-Infection Such as that Seen in 1918-19 Pandemic. J Virol Antivir Res 2:1. doi:10.4172/2324-8955.1000106

Abstract

Antigenic Complementarity between Influenza A Virus and Haemophilus influenzae may Drive Lethal Co-Infection Such as that Seen in 1918-19 Pandemic

Pfeiffer’s bacillus, now known as Haemophilus influenzae (HI), was strongly implicated in the high lethality of the 1918-19 influenza pandemic. Influenza virus (IV) infection is often complicated by (HI) super-infection and certainly was so in 1918-19. We propose that the influenza pandemic of 1918-19 was caused by concurrent pandemics of IV and HI that overwhelmed co-infected individuals through antigenic synergy between the two infections. Using T cell receptor sequences specific for IV and HI antigens, we demonstrate that IV and HI antigens induce molecularly complementary TCR responses.

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