During acute viral infections, clearance of the pathogen is followed by the contraction of the anti-viral T cell compartment. In contrast, T cell responses need to be maintained over a longer period of time during chronic viral infections in order to control viral replication and to avoid viral spreading. Much is known about inhibitory signals such as through PD-1 that limit T cell activity during chronic viral infection, but little is known about the stimulatory signals that allow maintenance of anti-viral T cells. Here, we show that the co-stimulatory molecule OX40 (CD134) is critically required in the context of persistent LCMV clone 13 infection. Anti-viral T cells express high levels of OX40 in the presence of their cognate antigen and T cells lacking the OX40 receptor fail to accumulate sufficiently. Moreover, the emergence of T cell dependent germinal center responses and LCMV-specific antibodies are severely impaired. Consequently, OX40-deficient mice fail to control LCMV clone 13 infection over time, highlighting the importance of this signaling pathway during persistent viral infection.