Effect of murine cytomegalovirus on the in vitro responses of T and B cells to mitogens

M. K. Selgrade, A. Ahmed, K. W. Sell, M. Eric Gershwin, A. D. Steinberg

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39 Scopus citations


Both in vitro and in vivo murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) infection depressed the responses of lymphocytes to both B and T cell mitogens. The possibilities that macrophages or nonspecific T cell inhibition of B cells might account for the depressed responses were eliminated. In vitro data suggested that B cell responses are more susceptible to this depression than T cell responses. The possibility that the depression of T cell responses is not a direct effect of viral infection of lymphocytes is discussed. To investigate further the interaction between B and T lymphocytes and MCMV, mice with B and T cell deficiences were studied. A comparison of the susceptibility of athymic Nu/Nu mice and T ell competent Nu/+ littermates to MCMV showed that the LD 50 for Nu/Nu mice is 10 fold lower than that for Nu/+ mice, but Nu/+ mice given an LD 50 of virus died much sooner after infection than Nu/Nu mice given an LD 50. Pathogenic mechanisms responsible for death may be different in these two groups of mice. Similarly the MCMV LD 50 for B cell deficient mice (treated with goat anti mouse IgM serum) was 10 fold lower than the LD 50 for mice treated with normal goat serum, but given an LD 50 of virus, the latter died sooner after infection than the former. In contrast, there was little difference between the LD 50 or time of death after MCMV infection of CBA x DBA F 1 male mice (which are deficient in their response to thymic independent antigens) and their normal littermates, the CBA x DBA F 1 female mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1459-1465
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1976
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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