Indirect role of T cells in development of polioencephalitis and encephalomyelitis induced by encephalomyocarditis virus

J Virol. 1991 Jun;65(6):3238-45. doi: 10.1128/JVI.65.6.3238-3245.1991.


Infection of female BALB/c mice with encephalomyocarditis virus results in the development of a paralytic syndrome in 7 to 10 days postinoculation. Previous studies had suggested the involvement of an immune component in the development of central nervous system pathology. We have examined the effects of T-cell depletion on the development of polioencephalitis (neuronal necrosis and inflammation of the brain and brain stem) and the relative contribution of the CD4+ and CD8+ subsets following the establishment of viremia. We show that monoclonal antibody depletion of T cells is effective in the reduction of polioencephalitis when given prior to viral inoculation. However, administration of the antibodies 12 h or more after viral inoculation failed to alter the development of polioencephalitis or encephalomyelitis. We conclude that T cells are involved in the development of central nervous system disease during the initial stages of infection but are not responsible for the later progression of disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Antibodies, Viral / biosynthesis
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Encephalomyelitis / complications
  • Encephalomyelitis / immunology*
  • Encephalomyelitis / pathology
  • Encephalomyocarditis virus / physiology*
  • Female
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Lymphocyte Activation / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Poliomyelitis / complications
  • Poliomyelitis / immunology*
  • Poliomyelitis / pathology
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*
  • Viremia / complications
  • Viremia / pathology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Viral