★ UV-4 provides effective inhibition of dengue virus infection in vivo. ★ Treatment with UV-4 in vivo reduces viral titers in key tissues. ★ Cytokine levels are reduced in UV-4 treated mice. ★ First study to thoroughly characterize the effect of an iminosugar on DENV.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the ability of the iminosugar drug UV-4 to provide in vivo protection from lethal dengue virus (DENV) challenge. This study utilized a well-described model of dengue hemorrhagic fever/dengue shock syndrome (DHF/DSS)-like lethal disease in AG129 mice lacking the type I and II interferon receptors. Herein, we present UV-4 as a potent iminosugar for controlling DENV infection and disease in this mouse model. Specifically, administration of UV-4 reduced mortality, as well as viremia and viral RNA in key tissues, and cytokine storm. In addition, UV-4 treatment can be delayed, and it does not alter the anti-DENV antibody response. These results have set the foundation for development of UV-4 as a DENV-specific antiviral in phase I human clinical trials.