A-type and B-type Epstein-Barr virus differ in their ability to spontaneously enter the lytic cycle

J Gen Virol. 1999 Feb;80 ( Pt 2):441-445. doi: 10.1099/0022-1317-80-2-441.


In this study replication of A-type and B-type Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) strains has been assessed. A-type and B-type type lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) were established by infecting B lymphocytes, isolated from five EBV-seropositive donors, with different A-type and B-type virus isolates. The presence of viral capsid antigens (VCA) in these LCLs was determined by immunofluoresence assay and by immunoblotting. All of the B-type EBV strains were capable of spontaneously generating virus regardless of the origin of the donor cells. In contrast the A-type strains, other than strain IARC-BL36, did not readily produce VCA in any of the different donor lymphocytes used. This study demonstrates another biological difference between the two virus types: their ability to spontaneously enter the lytic cycle.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Viral / biosynthesis
  • B-Lymphocytes / virology
  • Capsid / biosynthesis
  • Capsid / immunology
  • Cell Line, Transformed
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / classification*
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / immunology
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Species Specificity
  • Virus Replication


  • Antigens, Viral