Influenza is a major burden to public health. Due to high mutation rates and selection pressure, mutant viruses emerge which are resistant to currently used antiviral drugs. Therefore, there is a need for the development of novel classes of antiviral drugs that suffer less from the emergence of resistant viruses. Antiviral drugs based on collectin-like surfactant protein D (SP-D) may fulfil these requirements. Especially porcine SP-D displays strong antiviral activity to influenza A viruses. In the present study the antiviral activity of recombinant porcine SP-D was investigated in ex vivo cultures of respiratory tract tissue infected with human influenza A virus of the H3N2 subtype. Porcine SP-D has antiviral activity in these test systems. It is suggested that porcine SP-D may be used as a venue to develop a novel class of antiviral drugs.

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Virus Research
Department of Virology

Hillaire, M., van Eijk, M., Vogelzang-van Trierum, S., Fouchier, R., Osterhaus, A., Haagsman, H., & Rimmelzwaan, G. (2014). Recombinant porcine surfactant protein D inhibits influenza A virus replication ex vivo. Virus Research, 181, 22–26. doi:10.1016/j.virusres.2013.12.032