Improved Immune Responses Against Zika Virus After Sequential Dengue and Zika Virus Infection in Humans




The high levels of dengue-virus (DENV) seroprevalence in areas where the Zika virus (ZIKV) is circulating and the cross-reactivity between these two viruses have raised concerns on the risk of increased ZIKV disease severity for patients with a history of previous DENV infections. To determine the role of DENV preimmunity in ZIKV infection, we analyzed the T- and B-cell responses against ZIKV in donors with or without previous DENV infection. Using peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from donors living in an endemic area in Colombia, we have identified, by interferon (IFN)- enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) assay, most of the immunodominant ZIKV T-cell epitopes in the nonstructural (NS) proteins NS1, NS3, and NS5. Analyses of the T- and B-cell responses in the same donors revealed a stronger T-cell response against peptides conserved between DENV and ZIKV, with a higher level of ZIKV-neutralizing antibodies in DENV-immune donors in comparison with DENV-naïve donors. Strikingly, the potential for antibody-mediated enhancement of ZIKV infection was reduced in donors with sequential DENV and ZIKV infection in comparison with donors with DENV infection only. Altogether, these data suggest that individuals with DENV immunity present improved immune responses against ZIKV.

Palabras clave


Dengue virus, Zika virus, T-cell epitopes, Cross-reactive T cells


Virus del dengue
Virus zika