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Dynamic interactions of influenza viruses in Hong Kong during 1998-2018

journal contribution
posted on 2023-07-17, 23:30 authored by W Yang, EHY Lau, BJ Cowling
Influenza epidemics cause substantial morbidity and mortality every year worldwide. Currently, two influenza A subtypes, A(H1N1) and A(H3N2), and type B viruses co-circulate in humans and infection with one type/subtype could provide cross-protection against the others. However, it remains unclear how such ecologic competition via cross-immunity and antigenic mutations that allow immune escape impact influenza epidemic dynamics at the population level. Here we develop a comprehensive model-inference system and apply it to study the evolutionary and epidemiological dynamics of the three influenza types/subtypes in Hong Kong, a city of global public health significance for influenza epidemic and pandemic control. Utilizing long-term influenza surveillance data since 1998, we are able to estimate the strength of cross-immunity between each virus-pairs, the timing and frequency of punctuated changes in population immunity in response to antigenic mutations in influenza viruses, and key epidemiological parameters over the last 20 years including the 2009 pandemic. We find evidence of cross-immunity in all types/subtypes, with strongest crossimmunity from A(H1N1) against A(H3N2). Our results also suggest that A(H3N2) may undergo antigenic mutations in both summers and winters and thus monitoring the virus in both seasons may be important for vaccine development. Overall, our study reveals intricate epidemiological interactions and underscores the importance of simultaneous monitoring of population immunity, incidence rates, and viral genetic and antigenic changes.

History

Journal

PLoS Computational Biology

Volume

16

Article number

e1007989

Pagination

e1007989-e1007989

Location

United States

ISSN

1553-734X

eISSN

1553-7358

Language

en

Editor/Contributor(s)

Viboud C

Issue

6

Publisher

Public Library of Science (PLoS)