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Mammalian influenza viruses are descendants of avian strains that crossed the species barrier and underwent further adaptation. Since 1997 in southeast Asia, H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses have been causing severe, even fatal disease in humans. Although no lineages of this subtype have been established until now, such repeated events may(More)
Influenza A viruses are important worldwide pathogens in humans and different animal species. The functions of most of the ten different viral proteins of this negative-strand RNA virus have been well elucidated. However, little is known about the virus-induced intracellular signalling events that support viral replication. The Raf/MEK/ERK cascade is the(More)
Infections with influenza A viruses result in the activation of a variety of intracellular signalling pathways. Recent findings suggest that in response to double-stranded RNA (dsRNA), which is commonly used as a mimic for accumulating viral RNA, the phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) is activated and mediates activation of the transcription factor(More)
According to phylogenetic data, about 100 years ago an avian influenza virus passed the species barrier (possibly first) to pigs and (possibly from there) to humans. In 1979 an avian influenza A virus (as a whole, without reassortment) again entered the pig population in northern Europe, forming a stable lineage. Here it is shown that the early North(More)
Apoptosis is a hallmark event observed upon infection with many viral pathogens, including influenza A virus. The apoptotic process is executed by a proteolytic system consisting of a family of cysteinyl proteases, termed caspases. Since the consequences of apoptosis induction and caspase activation for the outcome of an influenza virus infection are not(More)
Activation of the transcription factor NF-kappaB is a hallmark of infections by viral pathogens including influenza viruses. Because gene expression of many proinflammatory and antiviral cytokines is controlled by this factor, the concept emerged that NF-kappaB and its upstream regulator IkappaB kinase are essential components of the innate antiviral immune(More)
Recently we have shown that influenza A virus infection leads to activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt pathway and that this cellular reaction is dependent on the expression of the viral nonstructural protein 1 (NS1). These data also suggested that PI3K activation confers a virus-supporting activity at intermediate stages of the(More)
Small RNA viruses such as influenza viruses extensively manipulate host-cell functions to support their replication. At the same time the infected cell induces an array of defence mechanisms to fight the invader. These processes are mediated by a variety of intracellular signalling cascades. Here we will review the current knowledge of functional kinase(More)
Influenza virus (IV) infection can cause severe pneumonia and death. Therapeutic actions are limited to vaccines and a few anti-viral drugs. These target viral functions thereby selecting resistant variants. During replication IV activates the Raf/MEK/ERK-cascade and the transcription factor NF-kappaB. Both result in virus supportive and anti-viral effects(More)
Influenza viruses continue to pose a severe threat worldwide, causing thousands of deaths and an enormous economic loss every year. The major problem in fighting influenza is the high genetic variability of the virus, resulting in the rapid formation of variants that escape the acquired immunity against previous virus strains, or have resistance to(More)