The sensitivity of mouse mammary tumour virus (MMTV) and murine leukaemia virus (MuLV) to interferon was tested by investigating the effect of interferon in cultures of mouse mammary tumour cells simultaneously synthesizing the two viruses. The dose—response curves showed that the extracellular production of both viruses by these cells was equally inhibited by interferon treatment. In contrast, the intracellular steady-state concentration of virus-specific RNA of both MMTV and MuLV was not significantly affected in these cells. This was the case regardless of whether total cellular RNA or polysomal poly(A)-containing RNA was examined. These results are consistent with the suggestion that interferon-caused inhibition is related to a host-mediated effect on a post-transcriptional step in virus synthesis.


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