Monocyte-derived human macrophages and peripheral blood mononuclear cells infected with ebola virus secrete MIP-1alpha and TNF-alpha and inhibit poly-IC-induced IFN-alpha in vitro

Virology. 2001 May 25;284(1):20-5. doi: 10.1006/viro.2001.0836.


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.

MeSH terms

  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chemokine CCL2 / blood
  • Chemokine CCL3
  • Chemokine CCL4
  • Chemokine CCL5 / blood
  • Ebolavirus
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola / blood*
  • Humans
  • Interferon-alpha / blood*
  • Interferon-beta / blood
  • Interleukin-1 / blood
  • Interleukin-10 / blood
  • Macrophage Inflammatory Proteins / blood*
  • Macrophages / drug effects
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Macrophages / virology*
  • Monocytes / drug effects
  • Monocytes / metabolism
  • Monocytes / virology*
  • Poly I-C / pharmacology*
  • RNA, Double-Stranded / pharmacology
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism*


  • Chemokine CCL2
  • Chemokine CCL3
  • Chemokine CCL4
  • Chemokine CCL5
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Interleukin-1
  • Macrophage Inflammatory Proteins
  • RNA, Double-Stranded
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Interleukin-10
  • Interferon-beta
  • Poly I-C