Despite a great deal of effort to understand the nature of virus-triggered inflammatory heart disease, the processes that underlie the progression from viral infection to an autoimmune disease and finally to cardiomyopathy and heart failure remain poorly understood. The animal models provide an opportunity to study (1) the complex phenomena of viral entry and replication, (2) immune response to the viral infection, (3) autoimmune response to cardiac antigens, (4) the role of individual inflammatory components in disease progression, (5) the nature of cardiac remodeling in response to viral damage and inflammation, and (6) the development of cardiac dysfunction. A better knowledge of each of these stages of the disease is needed for the improvement of therapeutic interventions. Translation of the research findings into the clinically meaningful data also requires an understanding of the advantages and limitations of individual animal models, formulation of hypotheses based on the basic research findings, and a careful design of clinical trials to address these hypotheses.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)