Influenza A viruses display a broad cellular tropism within the respiratory tracts of mammalian hosts. Uncovering the relationship between tropism and virus immunity, pathogenesis, and transmission will be critical for the development of therapeutic interventions. Here we discuss recent developments of several recombinant strains of influenza A virus. These viruses have inserted reporters to track tropism, microRNA target sites to restrict tropism, or barcodes to assess transmission dynamics, expanding our understanding of pathogen-host interactions.
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© 2015, American Society for Microbiology.