Apoptotic death of virus-infected cells is generally thought to be a defense mechanism to limit the spread of infectious virions by eliminating virus-producing cells in host animals. On the other hand, several viruses have been shown to have anti-apoptotic mechanisms to facilitate efficient viral replication and transmission. In this study, we found that the filovirus glycoprotein (GP) expressed on cell surfaces formed a steric shield over the Fas molecule and that GP-expressing cells showed resistance to cell death induced by a Fas agonistic antibody. These results suggest that filovirus GP-mediated steric shielding may interfere with the Fas-induced apoptotic signal transduction in infected cells and serve as an immune evasion mechanism for filoviruses. (C) 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.