It has been shown previously (Pringle, 1965) that recombination or hybridization can be observed between related but immunologically distinct strains of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV). In order to obtain more precise information concerning the nature of the recombination process in FMDV, suitable single-step mutational changes have been sought which would facilitate intra-strain crosses. Conditional lethal mutants induced by base analogues are described which have been used to demonstrate recombination between mutants considered to affect different viral functions.

Unlike the majority of strains the -3 strain of FMDV is able to replicate unimpaired at 42° in various host cells. Multiplication of this strain in the presence of the base analogue 5-fluorouracil yields progeny virus with a reduced e.o.p. at 41.5° (Fig. 1). For technical convenience throughout these experiments the e.o.p. was measured at 41.5° rather than 42°, using monolayers in bottles totally immersed in a precision water bath.


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