Response of genetically susceptible and resistant mice to intranasal inoculation with mouse hepatitis virus JHM

Stephen W Barthold, Abigail L. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

34 Scopus citations


Mouse hepatitis virus (MHV)-JHM infection was studied in genetically susceptible (BALB/cByJ) and resistant (SJL/J) mice following intranasal inoculation at 1, 3, 6 or 12 wk of age. Markers of infection included histology, immunohistochemistry, virus quantification and virus serology. All BALE mice developed severe disseminated disease with high mortality due to encephalitis and hepatitis. Peak MHV titers appeared in brain, liver, spleen and intestine on days 3 or 5. Age at inoculation did not influence virus titers in brain, spleen or intestine, but virus titers in liver were inversely proportional to age at inoculation. In 6-wk-old BALE mice, virus was cleared from spleen, intestine and liver by day 30 and from brain by day 60. In intestine, MHV was localized to lymphoid tissue, without fecal excretion. SJL mice of all ages developed remarkably milder disease with low mortality occurring only among mice inoculated at 1 wk of age. SJL mice inoculated at 1 wk had disseminated infection at day 3, but lesions and antigen were cleared from most organs by day 5. Mice inoculated at 3 and 6 wk of age had minimal or no involvement of peripheral organs, and mice inoculated at 12 wk of age had infections restricted to the nose. At day 5, MHV titers in brain, liver, spleen and intestine were significantly lower or undetectable in SJL mice of all ages compared to age-matched BALB mice. In 6-wk-old mice, MHV was cleared from all organs by day 10. Serum antibody titers to MHV were many-fold higher in BALB mice, compared to SJL mice, which mounted only a modest response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)225-239
Number of pages15
JournalVirus Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1987
Externally publishedYes



  • Corona virus
  • Mouse
  • Mouse hepatitis virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Molecular Biology
  • Virology

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