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18 December 2018

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Int J Med Sci 2014; 11(6):538-544. doi:10.7150/ijms.7896

Short Research Communication

Senescence Affects Endothelial Cells Susceptibility to Dengue Virus Infection

Sazaly AbuBakar1✉, Meng-Hooi Shu1, Jefree Johari1, Pooi-Fong Wong2 ✉

1. Tropical Infectious Diseases Research and Education Centre (TIDREC), Department of Medical Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia;
2. Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


Alteration in the endothelium leading to increased vascular permeability contributes to plasma leakage seen in dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) and dengue shock syndrome (DSS). An earlier study showed that senescent endothelial cells (ECs) altered the ECs permeability. Here we investigated the susceptibility of senescing human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) to dengue virus infection and determined if dengue virus infection induces HUVECs senescence. Our results suggest that DENV type-2 (DENV-2) foci forming unit (FFU) and extracellular virus RNA copy number were reduced by at least 35% and 85% in infection of the intermediate young and early senescent HUVECs, respectively, in comparison to infection of young HUVECs. No to low infectivity was recovered from infection of late senescent HUVECs. DENV infection also increases the percentage of HUVECs expressing senescence-associated (SA)-β-gal, cells arrested at the G2/M phase or 4N DNA content stage and cells with enlarged morphology, indicative of senescing cells. Alteration of HUVECs morphology was recorded using impedance-based real-time cell analysis system following DENV-2 infection. These results suggest that senescing HUVECs do not support DENV infection and DENV infection induces HUVECs senescence. The finding highlights the possible role of induction of senescence in DENV infection of the endothelial cells.

Keywords: HUVECs, Endothelial cells, Senescence, Dengue virus, Endothelium permeability.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) License. See for full terms and conditions.
How to cite this article:
AbuBakar S, Shu MH, Johari J, Wong PF. Senescence Affects Endothelial Cells Susceptibility to Dengue Virus Infection. Int J Med Sci 2014; 11(6):538-544. doi:10.7150/ijms.7896. Available from