Infection with herpes simplex viruses type 1 or 2 prevented the aggregation of 7-day-old chick heart cells into smooth, spheroidal, spontaneously beating aggregates. Virus infection also caused a loosening of peripheral cells in aggregates formed from initially uninfected cells. Measurements of rate of attachment of labelled single heart cells to a monolayer of like cells (homotypic), to HEp-2 cells (heterotypic), or to plastic substrata (nonspecific adhesion) indicated that virus infection caused a significant but differential loss of homotypic and nonspecific adhesiveness, but no alteration in heterotypic attachment rates. These observations indicate that those cell surface changes induced by viruses which are related to cell adhesion can be quantified by techniques measuring attachment rates.


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