Climate, environmental and ecological changes have led to the recent increase in epidemic outbreaks of arboviruses in Brazil, including Chikungunya (CHIKV) and Mayaro (MAYV). Both CHIKV and MAYV are members of the family Togaviridae, genus Alphavirus, of the Semliki Forest antigenic complex and phylogenetically close. While CHIKV is the causative agent of outbreaks worldwide, MAYV infection represents a growing public health problem in Latin America, with sporadic cases and geographically limited outbreaks. However, MAYV remains extremely neglected, with the number of cases still underestimated, due to the similarity of clinical symptoms with chikungunya and dengue. Recent studies have shown that previous exposure to an alphavirus trigger in exposed individuals a potent humoral response capable of providing both protection against reinfection and partial cross-protection against heterologous reinfection. Thus, this project aims to establish different models of coinfection with CHIKV and MAYV in immunologically competent adult C57BL6/J mice, to study how this coinfection modulates the antibody-mediated humoral immune response and how it can alter the course of the infection of both viruses.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: