Herpes simplex virus from mouth and genitalia could be distinguished antigenically and also differed in certain biological properties. Viruses isolated from oral lesions replicated better in rabbit kidney cell cultures than did viruses isolated from genital lesions; however, the total number of virus particles produced was the same for both virus types. A greater proportion of particles in stocks of the oral strains grown in rabbit kidney cells were enveloped than in stocks of genital strains grown in the same cells. The genital strains formed plaques in chick embryo cell cultures, but the oral ones did not and replicated poorly. The genital strains were more neurovirulent when injected intracranially into mice than were the oral strains, based on the number of p.f.u. injected; however, there was no difference in neurovirulence if the doses were calculated in terms of total particles injected. These differences provide useful markers for characterizing the types of herpes virus.


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