Murine gammaherpesvirus 68 establishes a latent infection in mouse B lymphocytes in vivo

J Gen Virol. 1992 Dec;73 ( Pt 12):3275-9. doi: 10.1099/0022-1317-73-12-3275.


Murine gammaherpesvirus 68 (MHV-68) is able to persist in spleen cells of infected mice. To determine the cell type harbouring persistent virus, spleen cells from infected animals were separated into immunoglobulin (Ig)-positive (B cell-enriched), Ig-negative (T cell-enriched) and plastic-adherent (macrophage-enriched) fractions. These cells were co-cultivated with permissive BHK-21 cells in an infectious centre assay. The consistent recovery and enrichment of infectious centres in the Ig-positive fraction clearly demonstrates that B cells are a major site of virus persistence/latency. This observation indicates that MHV-68 is biologically similar to Epstein-Barr virus and other members of the B cell lymphotropic gammaherpesvirus 1 subgroup.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / microbiology*
  • Cell Separation
  • Herpesviridae / classification
  • Herpesviridae / growth & development*
  • Herpesviridae / pathogenicity
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Spleen / cytology