Tuesday, 19th March 2019

Virology and Microbiology

    African swine fever virus: models of evasion and protection




Angel L. López Carrascosa





Research summary:

During the last years our group has continued the study of the African swine fever virus (ASFV) as a model in the evasion of cellular antiviral response and for the generation of vaccine strains able to induce protective immunity in pigs against ASF.

La utilización de diversas líneas celulares establecidas susceptibles al virus nos ha facilitado la generación de nuevos virus recombinantes (Fig. 1) con genes específicos delecionados a partir del aislado NHV (capaz de generar inmunidad cruzada contra aislados virulentos de distinto genotipo), buscando la atenuación del aislado parental. Así hemos construido mutantes de deleción simples y dobles en genes virales involucrados en la respuesta inmune (como EP153R, que modula la expresión de antígenos MHC-I, ó A276R y A528R, que regulan la actividad de interferón beta), entre otras estrategias de atenuación. Asimismo, hemos analizado los niveles de síntesis de una serie de citoquinas en células porcinas (WSL y macrófagos alveolares) infectadas por aislados virales con distinto grado de virulencia (Fig. 2), en la búsqueda de un efecto específico durante el proceso de atenuación, que podamos utilizar para la determinación del grado de virulencia de los aislados virales mediante ensayos in vitro, evitando o reduciendo el uso de animales de experimentación.

Beside, and in collaboration with other research groups we have contributed in the study of new techniques for virus detection, and we are now optimizing the use of non-conventional antivirals like the lauryl gallate, valproic acid and other inhibitors of cell metabolism, in prevention and/or treatment of clinical and veterinary virus infections. The studies on cytotoxicity and antiviral action of the inhibitors, either alone or in combination, on cells infected in the laboratory, will supply the support for its possible practical application in in vivo infections.



Fig. 1. "Generation of ASFV recombinants with specific genes deleted by homologous recombination"


Fig. 2. "Cytokine expression on WSL cells infected by different ASFV isolates"




Latest publications:

  • Hurtado, C., M.J.Bustos, A.G.Granja, P.de León, P.Sabina, E.Lopez-Viñas, P.Gómez-Puertas, Y.Revilla and A.L.Carrascosa (2011). The African swine fever virus lectin EP153R modulates the surface membrane expression of MHC class I antigens. Arch. Virol. 156, 219-234
  • Carrascosa, A.L., M.J.Bustos and P.de León (2011). Methods for growing and titrating African Swine Fever Virus field and laboratory virus samples. Current Protocols in Cell Biology, 53:26.14.1-26.14.25
  • Sánchez, E.G., A.Quintas, D.P.Núñez, M.Nogal, S.Barroso, A.L.Carrascosa and Y.Revilla (2012). African Swine Fever Virus Uses Macropinocytosis to Enter Host Cells. PLoS Pathog 8(6): e1002754. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1002754
  • Gallardo, C., A.Soler, R.Nieto, A.L.Carrascosa, G.M.De Mia, R.P.Bishop, C.Martins, O.F.Folorunso, E.Couacy-Hymman, L.Heath, E.Martín, A.Simón, R.Martín, and M.Arias (2013). Comparative evaluation of novel African swine fever virus (ASF) antibody detection techniques derived from specific ASF viral genotypes with the OIE internationally prescribed serological tests. Vet. Microbiol. 162, 32-43
  • De León, P., M.J.Bustos and A.L.Carrascosa (2013). Laboratory methods to study African swine fever virus. Virus Research 173, 168-179




  • "Material Transfer Agreement with Augmenta Biologicals, LLC, for the evaluation and use of Hybridoma 1AC11, producing antibody against porcine glycophorin A, for development and commercialization under a commercial license agreement". Inventores: Diego Llanes, Marisa Nogal, Angel L. Carrascosa & Eladio Viñuela. Entidad titular: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (CSIC) and The University of Cordoba (UCO). License pending


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