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HA head antibodies; HA stalk antibodies; NA antibodies; antibody function; genomics; host response; human challenge; immune markers; immune response; influenza; microarrays; regulation of gene expression


In this study, we examined the relationships between anti-influenza virus serum antibody titers, clinical disease, and peripheral blood leukocyte (PBL) global gene expression during presymptomatic, acute, and convalescent illness in 83 participants infected with 2009 pandemic H1N1 virus in a human influenza challenge model. Using traditional statistical and logistic regression modeling approaches, profiles of differentially expressed genes that correlated with active viral shedding, predicted length of viral shedding, and predicted illness severity were identified. These analyses further demonstrated that challenge participants fell into three peripheral blood leukocyte gene expression phenotypes that significantly correlated with different clinical outcomes and prechallenge serum titers of antibodies specific for the viral neuraminidase, hemagglutinin head, and hemagglutinin stalk. Higher prechallenge serum antibody titers were inversely correlated with leukocyte responsiveness in participants with active disease and could mask expression of peripheral blood markers of clinical disease in some participants, including viral shedding and symptom severity. Consequently, preexisting anti-influenza antibodies may modulate PBL gene expression, and this must be taken into consideration in the development and interpretation of peripheral blood diagnostic and prognostic assays of influenza infection.


Institute for Systems Biology