Measles studies in the macaque model
Much of our current understanding of measles has come from experiments in non-human primates. In 1911, Goldberger and Anderson showed that macaques inoculated with filtered secretions from measles patients developed measles, thus demonstrating that the causative agent of this disease was a virus. Since then, different monkey species have been used for experimental measles virus infections. Moreover, infection studies in macaques demonstrated that serial passage of the virus in vivo and in vitro resulted in virus attenuation, providing the basis for all current live-attenuated measles vaccines. This chapter will review the macaque model for measles, with a focus on vaccination and immunopathogenesis studies conducted over the last 15 years. In addition, recent data are highlighted demonstrating that the application of a recombinant measles virus strain expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein dramatically increased the sensitivity of virus detection, both in living and sacrificed animals, allowing new approaches to old questions on measles vaccination and pathogenesis.