Encephalitic Arboviruses: Emergence, Clinical Presentation, and Neuropathogenesis


Arboviruses are arthropod-borne viruses that exhibit worldwide distribution, contributing to systemic and neurologic infections in a variety of geographical locations. Arboviruses are transmitted to vertebral hosts during blood feedings by mosquitoes, ticks, biting flies, mites, and nits. While the majority of arboviral infections do not lead to neuroinvasive forms of disease, they are among the most severe infectious risks to the health of the human central nervous system. The neurologic diseases caused by arboviruses include meningitis, encephalitis, myelitis, encephalomyelitis, neuritis, and myositis in which virus- and immune-mediated injury may lead to severe, persisting neurologic deficits or death. Here we will review the major families of emerging arboviruses that cause neurologic infections, their neuropathogenesis and host neuroimmunologic responses, and current strategies for treatment and prevention of neurologic infections they cause.

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