In order to investigate the nature of tubular structures specifically found in herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2)-infected cells, the multiplication of HSV-2 was studied in Vero cells cultured in the presence of varying concentrations of cytosine arabinoside (Ara-C) and cycloheximide (CH), inhibitors of DNA synthesis and protein synthesis respectively. Ara-C, at a concentration of 60 µg/ml, inhibited the multiplication of HSV-2 by more than 99% and also prevented the appearance of tubular structures and virus particles in the nuclei of infected cells. Nevertheless, the synthesis of virus specific surface antigens of HSV-2-infected Vero cells was not reduced, as revealed by the fluorescent antibody technique. On the other hand, 10 µg/ml of CH inhibited both the appearance of tubular structures and virus particles and the synthesis of virus specific surface antigens by more than 99%. These observations strongly suggest that the appearance of tubular structures is one of the late events in the process of virus multiplication.

To measure the comparative genome size needed to produce membrane antigens, tubular structures and infectious centres, the effect of u.v.-inactivation of HSV-2 on these processes was studied. After u.v.-irradiation, the capacity to induce tubular structures was inactivated at a slower rate than the capacity to form infectious centres, but at a faster rate than the induction of surface antigens. Furthermore, more tubular structures could be induced by u.v.-inactivated virus than by the nonirradiated virus which was diluted to the same infectivity as the u.v.-irradiated virus. These results indicate that expression of the entire genome is not required for the production of tubular structures.


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