The filoviruses Ebola and Marburg have emerged in the past decade from relative obscurity to serve now as archetypes for some of the more intriguing and daunting challenges posed by such agents. Public imagination is captured by deadly outbreaks of these viruses and reinforced by the specter of bioterrorism. As research on these agents has accelerated, it has been found increasingly that filoviruses use a combination of familiar and apparently new ways to baffle and battle the immune system. Filoviruses have provided thereby a new lens through which to examine the immune system itself.
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