Effects of viral virulence on intrauterine growth in SIV-infected fetal rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta)

Alice F Tarantal, Marta Marthas, S. E. Gargosky, M. Otysula, M. B. McChesney, Chris J Miller, Andrew G Hendrickx

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34 Scopus citations


Studies with a simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV)-infected fetal monkey model were conducted with a focus on fetal growth and viral pathogenesis. Twenty-six fetuses were inoculated in utero via ultrasound guidance with an uncloned pathogenic strain of SIV or vehicle during the second or third trimesters [gestational day (GD) 65, 110, or 1301, sonographically monitored weekly (biometrics, blood flow), then necropsied at incremental time points postinfection. Peripheral blood hematologic (complete blood counts, clinical chemistries), immunologic (immunophenotyping), and endocrine studies [insulin-like growth factor (IGF), IGF-binding proteins (IGFBP)] were conducted. Severe intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), oligohydramnios, and altered lymphocyte counts were noted for fetuses infected on GD 65. Less severe effects were detected for fetuses inoculated at the later time points, with severity dependent upon the length of SIV infection in utero. IGF studies indicated significant reductions in IGF-I and elevated immunoreactive levels of IGFBP-3 in infected fetuses during the third trimester. Parallel studies conducted with four fetuses infected on GD 65 with a nonpathogenic, molecularly cloned virus (SIVmac1A11) resulted in normal fetal growth, with no effects on hematopoiesis or IGF/IGFBP levels, and no evidence of clinical disease. Taken together, these studies show that (1) infection of fetuses during the early second trimester with an uncloned pathogenic strain of SIV results in severe IUGR and a disruption in the molar ratio of IGF:IGFBP-3, and (2) outcome of fetal SIV infection is determined by the timing of infection and the virulence of the viral inoculum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-138
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes and Human Retrovirology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1995


  • Fetal growth
  • Insulin-like growth factor
  • Monkey
  • SIV
  • Viral virulence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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