The intracellular localization of the major capsid protein (ICP5) of herpes simplex virus was studied during virogenesis. Except for a brief period at the onset of synthesis, this protein was found almost exclusively inside the nucleus. Its localization was not at random since 80% was tightly bound to the nuclear matrix as early as 4 h after infection. Discrete modifications of the fluorescence pattern occurred in an orderly fashion during the progression of the infection. Immunoelectron microscopic studies using Protein A-gold labelling demonstrated that this protein is synthesized on cytoskeleton- bound polyribosomes and accumulates in the central part of the nucleus where formation of viral capsids occurs; no gold particles were found in association with the peripheral chromatin or with the nucleolus.


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