Zika virus infection damages the testes in mice (Nature. 2016, 15;540(7633):438-442.)

報告日期: 2017/04/11
報告時間: 4:00/4:50
報告學生: 洪呈輝(以英文報告)
講評老師: 彭貴春

Zika virus infection damages the testes in mice

 Jennifer Govero, et al. Nature. 2016; 540 (7633): 438-442

Speaker: Chen-Huei Hung (洪呈輝)         Time: 16:00-16:50, April 11, 2017

Commentator: Dr. Guey-Chuen Perng (彭貴春) Place: Room 602


Zika virus (ZIKV) infection can cause neuro­logical complications, such as Guillain Barré syndrome and microcephaly[1], which have focused global concern in the emerging pathogen. In addition to carried by mosquitos, ZIKV can be detected in the

seminal fluid of infected males for extended periods of time and transmitted sexually[2]. Previous studies show that infection of male adult mice with ZIKV results in infection of the testes[3], which is consistent with observed sexual transmission in humans. To address the effects of ZIKV infection on the male reproductive tract, the authors infected C57BL/6 mice with ZIKV mouse-adapted Dakar 41519. High levels of viral RNA and infectious virus were detected in the testis, epididymis , and the fluid collected from the epididymis within seven days post-infection with ZIKV but not DENV. ZIKV persisted in the reproductive tract up to 42 days post-infection (p.i.). Involution of the testis was observed, indicated by their noticeably reduced size and weight. Loss of integrity of the blood–testis barrier occured on 14 days p.i., with the interstitial inflammation and macrophages in the affected testis. ZIKV RNA was evident in spermatogonia, primary spermatocytes , and Sertoli cells, with damage to the architecture of the seminiferous tubules. The numbers of germ cells andspermatogonia were decreased, and morphological abnormalities of Sertoli cells and detachment of Sertoli cells from the basement membrane were observed. Two hormones important for spermatogenesis, testosterone and inhibin B, were decreased by 14 days p.i.and remained low on 21 days p.i.. Rates of pregnancy and numbers of viable fetuses from females mated with ZIKV-infected males were reduced when compared to uninfected males. Further studies of sperm function and viability inZIKV-infected humans seem warranted.


  1. Mlakar, J., et al., Zika Virus Associated with Microcephaly. N Engl J Med, 2016. 374(10): p. 951-8.
  2. Matheron, S., et al., Long-Lasting Persistence of Zika Virus in Semen. Clin Infect Dis, 2016. 63(9): p. 1264.
  3. Lazear, H.M., et al., A Mouse Model of Zika Virus Pathogenesis. Cell Host Microbe, 2016. 19(5): p. 720-30.