Influenza is a respiratory disease that seriously threatens human health. In fact, influenza virus itself does not make critical contribution to mortality induced by influenza, but "cytokine storm" produced by the excessive immune response triggered by the virus can result in inflammatory reaction of lung tissues and fatal lung tissue injury, and thus increase influenza mortality. Therefore, besides antiviral drugs, immunosuppression drugs should also be included in infection treatment.
Complement is the center of inflammatory reaction. If complement system is over activated, the body will have strong inflammatory reaction or tissue injury, resulting in pathological process. Many studies have proved that, inflammatory injury of lung tissues caused by influenza virus is closely related to complement activation. Therefore, inhibiting complement activation can significantly reduce inflammatory injury in lung tissues. As complement is both a physiological defense and pathological damage medium, systematic inhibition may result in side effects including infection. Therefore, we design targeting complement inhibitors for complement activation sites, i.e. with CR2 as targeting vector, complement inhibitors like CD59 and Crry are targeted to inflammatory sites to specially inhibit the complement activation in local injury, thus local inflammatory reaction is inhibited.
CR2-CD59 and CR2-Crry targeting complement inhibitors are fusion-expressed, and their biological activity is examined via in vivo and in vitro tests. CR2 targeting complement inhibitors are used to treat mouse influenza viral pneumonia model, with PBS treatment group as the control. The survival and lung tissue injury of the mice is observed and the effect of CR2 targeting complement inhibitors on pneumonia induced by influenza virus is evaluated.