A recombinant vaccinia virus strain which contains and expresses a 26S cDNA insert encoding Sindbis virus structural proteins (VV:3S) was used to infect a continuous line of mosquito cells. There were not visible cytopathic effects due to the virus infection and the cells continued to grow normally. However, examination of the proteins present in the cytoplasm of the infected cells with Sindbis virus-specific antisera revealed that Sindbis virus proteins were being synthesized and processed. These results are discussed with respect to (i) vaccinia virus as a non-lethal expression vector to deliver and express eukaryotic genetic information in insect cell systems and (ii) using this system (VV:3S) to dissect various facets of togavirus-insect cell interactions.


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