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Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection is the most significant cause of viral death in infants worldwide. The significant morbidity and mortality associated with this disease underscores the urgent need for the development of an RSV vaccine. The development of an RSV vaccine has been hampered by our limited understanding of the human host immune system, which plays a significant role in RSV pathogenesis, susceptibility and vaccine efficacy. As a result, animal models have been developed to better understand the mechanisms by which RSV causes disease. Within the past few years, a revolutionary variation on these animal models has emerged - age at time of initial infection - and early studies in neonatal mice (aged infection) indicate the validity of this model to understand RSV infection in infants. This article reviews available information on current murine and emerging neonatal mouse RSV models. © 2010 Expert Reviews Ltd.

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Expert Review of Anti-Infective Therapy

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