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Molecular attenuation of vaccinia virus: mutant generation and animal characterization.

By M S Lee, J M Roos, L C McGuigan, K A Smith, N Cormier, L K Cohen, B E Roberts and L G Payne


These studies demonstrated that the inbred BALB/c mouse strain can be optimized for the assessment of vaccinia virus virulence, growth, and spread from the site of inoculation and immune protection from a lethal vaccinia virus challenge. The studies established that manipulation of the vaccinia virus genome generated mutants exhibiting a wide range of attenuated phenotypes. The nine NYCBH vaccinia virus mutants had intracranial 50% lethal doses that ranged from 2 to greater than 7 log10 units. The decreased neurovirulence was due to decreased replication in brain tissue. Three mutants had a decreased ability to disseminate to the lungs, brains, livers, and spleens of mice after intranasal infection. One mutant had a decreased transmission from mice infected by tail scarification to naive cage mates. Although the mutants, with one exception, grew to wild-type titers in cell culture, they showed a growth potential on the scarified skin of mice that was dramatically different from that of the wild-type virus. Consequently, all of the mutants had significantly compromised immunogenicities at low virus immunization doses compared with that of the wild-type virus. Conversely, at high immunization doses most mutants could induce an immune response similar to that of the wild-type virus. Three Wyeth vaccine strain mutants were also studied. Whereas the thymidine kinase, ribonucleotide reductase, and hemagglutinin mutants had a reduced virulence (50% lethal dose), only the thymidine kinase mutant retained its immunogenicity

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1992
OAI identifier: oai:pubmedcentral.nih.gov:241015
Provided by: PubMed Central
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