Protocol for analyzing and visualizing antiviral immune responses after acute infection of the murine oral mucosa

STAR Protoc. 2021 Sep 23;2(4):100790. doi: 10.1016/j.xpro.2021.100790. eCollection 2021 Dec 17.


The oral mucosa is an important site for virus infection and transmission, yet few animal models exist to examine the virology, pathology, and immunology of acute oral mucosal viral infection. Here, we provide a protocol for infecting and imaging the inner lip (labial mucosa) of mice with the poxvirus vaccinia virus (VACV). Inoculation of the labial mucosa with a bifurcated needle results in viral replication and priming of an adaptive antiviral response that can be imaged using intravital microscopy. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Shannon et al. (2021).

Keywords: Flow Cytometry/Mass Cytometry; Immunology; Microbiology; Microscopy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacology*
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Female
  • Mice
  • Mouth Mucosa* / drug effects
  • Mouth Mucosa* / immunology
  • Mouth Mucosa* / virology
  • Poxviridae Infections* / immunology
  • Poxviridae Infections* / virology
  • Vaccinia virus / drug effects*


  • Antiviral Agents