Details of the productive infection of established human cell lines of diverse origin by HBLV (also designated Human Herpesvirus 6) are described in this report. The infection and replication of HBLV in several T and B lymphoid and other cell lines was observed by electron microscopic examination, by the detection of viral antigen expression by indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and by the presence of HBLV DNA by Southern blot hybridization. Several of these cell lines produced large amounts of virus. For this reason and because of the absence of other human herpesviruses, these lines have provided a valuable resource for the preparation of reagents and the development of assays for the detection and characterization of HBLV. The isolation and characterization of new HBLV isolates from patients with chronic fatigue syndrome were also facilitated by using some of the cell lines reported here. The host range of HBLV in established cell lines, therefore, does not appear to be limited to the B lymphocytes, as initially suggested by in vivo studies. The infection of T and B lymphocytes, megakaryocytes and neuronal cells in vitro suggests a need for the evaluation of diverse hematological and neurological disorders to shed light on a possible HBLV involvement.