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A deadly shadow: Measles may weaken immune system up to three years

Filed in National Health News 5/11/15 at 9:48 am     1478     Medical Xpress

The measles virus is known to cast a deadly shadow upon children by temporarily suppressing their immune systems. While this vulnerability was previously thought to have lasted a month or two, a new study shows that children may actually live in the immunological shadow of measles for up to three years – leaving them highly susceptible to a host of other deadly diseases.

Published in the journal Science, the study, led by researchers from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, provides epidemiologic evidence that measles may throw the body into a much longer-term state of “immune amnesia,” where essential memory cells that protect the body against infectious diseasesare partially wiped out.

Read the rest at Medical Xpress

Notes and Image Credits:

Header Image: This electron micrograph reveals both a paramyxovirus measles virus, and virions of the polyomavirus, simian virus SV40. (CDC)

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