Parma wallaby herpesvirus (PWHV) has been characterized by a number of properties. Electron microscopic examination of thin sections of infected cell nuclei revealed virus nucleocapsids with various morphologies characteristic of herpesviruses; enveloped particles were seen in cytoplasmic vacuoles and outside cells. Negatively stained virus preparations from the medium of infected cell cultures contained particles with the typical appearance of naked and enveloped herpesviruses. The DNA of PWHV had a mean buoyant density in preparative caesium chloride gradients of 1.712 g/ml, giving an estimated base composition of 51% guanosine plus cytosine. The virus was able to replicate in all marsupial cells, but not in most eutherian cells tested, and a single cycle of infection lasted about 25 h. Infectivity was destroyed by a number of agents including lipid solvents, acid pH and heat. The observed properties support the classification of this virus as a new member of the herpesvirus family.


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