Ebola virus infection of humans is associated with high levels of circulating inflammatory chemokines and cytokines. We demonstrate that direct infection of human PBMC results in the induction of MCP-1, MIP-1alpha, RANTES, and TNF-alpha as early as 24 h p.i. in response to live virus. Monocyte-derived macrophages infected with live Ebola-virus secreted MIP-1alpha and TNF-alpha specifically while RANTES and MCP-1 were secreted by with both live or inactivated virus stimulation and do not require viral replication. Type I interferons (IFN-alpha and -beta), IL-1beta and IL-10, were not induced by Ebola virus. Furthermore, live virus infection of both PBMCs and monocytes-derived macrophages inhibited IFN-alpha induced by double-stranded RNA in vitro. These data provide the first direct evidence of a role for macrophages in the pathogenesis to Ebola virus and suggest that Ebola virus can inhibit cellular antiviral mechanisms mediated by type I interferons.
Copyright 2001 Academic Press.