Cultured spinal ganglia and cord from mice and hamsters were infected with mumps virus or Sendai virus. Expression of five structural proteins, the haemagglutinin-neuraminidase, fusion, nucleocapsid (NP), phospho (P) and matrix proteins was examined with monoclonal antibodies to each protein. In Sendai virus-infected mouse neurons all five viral proteins were detected. In hamster neurons infected with mumps virus all viral proteins were also expressed, but in mouse neurons only the NP and P proteins were seen. This suggests a species-specific cellular restriction of viral protein synthesis in mumps virus-infected mouse neurons. There was no, or only a slight, reduction in the number of neurons between days 4 and 20 after infection of mouse cultures with mumps virus, but the proportion of infected neurons diminished from 68% to 15% during this time.


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