The human respiratory syncytial virus (hRSV) is one of the most important causes of upper and lower respiratory tract infections in children and the main cause of bronchiolitis worldwide. Disease manifestations caused by hRSV may vary from mild to severe, occasionally requiring admission and hospitalization in intensive care units. Despite the high morbidity rates associated to bronchiolitis, treatment options against hRSV are limited and there are no current vaccination strategies to prevent infection. Importantly, the early identification of high-risk patients can help improve disease management and prevent complications associated with hRSV infection. Recently, the characterization of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine patterns produced during hRSV-related inflammatory processes has allowed the identification of potential prognosis biomarkers. A suitable biomarker should allow predicting the severity of the infection in a simple and opportune manner and should ideally be obtained from non-invasive samples. Among the cytokines associated with hRSV disease severity, IL-8, interferon-alpha (IFN-alpha), and IL-6, as well as the Th2-type cytokines thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP), IL-3, and IL-33 have been highlighted as molecules with prognostic value in hRSV infections. In this review, we discuss current studies that describe molecules produced by patients during hRSV infection and their potential as biomarkers to anticipate the severity of the disease caused by this virus.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy