Our previous study reported that persistently infected (PI) cattle of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) have co-infected with BVDV/END- and /END+ that promote and inhibit host's type-I interferon (IFN) production, respectively. However, the relationship between co-infection of immunologically distinct BVDVs and persistent infection as well as the biological significance of END- viruses remains unknown. Experiments using cultured cells revealed that END+ virus, which is unable to propagate in situations where the host's immune response is induced by IFN-α addition, is able to propagate under those conditions when co-infecting with END- virus. These results indicate that BVDV/END- can coexist with BVDV/END+ and that co-infection with END- viruses supports the propagation of END+ viruses. Our in vitro experiments strongly suggest that co-infection with END- virus is involved in the maintenance of persistent infection of BVDV.
Keywords: BVDV; Co-infection; END-Phenomenon.
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