The varicella-zoster virus-infected cell proteins (VZV-ICPs) against which IgG, IgM and IgA antibodies were made in the course of primary varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection were analysed by the immune transfer method. IgG antibodies were made against one or more of 18 VZV-ICPs by patients with varicella. IgM antibodies were produced which reacted with 21 VZV-ICPs. The spectrum of IgG antibody production during the first week after the onset of infection was limited to an average of three VZV-ICPs while IgM antibodies which reacted with an average of seven VZV-ICPs were detectable in the acute phase of varicella. Equivalent VZV IgG or IgM antibody titres by radioimmunoassay did not correlate with a similar pattern of antibody specificity for VZV-ICPs by immune transfer. A detectable immune response to all VZV-ICPs was not required for the recovery of individual patients from primary VZV infection.


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