Pathogenic serotype 1 strains of infectious bursal disease virus (IBDV) replicate efficiently in lymphoid cells of the bursa of Fabricius of chicken. Lymphoid cells in other organs are not susceptible. Apathogenic serotype 2 strains do not replicate in lymphoid bursa cells or in other lymphoid cells. Chicken embryo fibroblasts (CEF), however, efficiently replicate strains of either serotype. Binding studies showed that strains of both IBDV serotypes bind to lymphoid cells isolated from the bursa, thymus or spleen, indicating that restriction of IBDV replication to lymphoid B cells is not determined by the presence of specific receptor sites. The specificity of binding was demonstrated by saturation and competition experiments. These revealed the presence of different receptors: CEF had receptors common to both serotypes and specific ones for each serotype. Receptor sites common to both serotypes were also present on lymphoid cells; however, additional serotype-specific sites were only demonstrated for the apathogenic serotype 2 strain. Strains of both serotypes specificially bound to proteins with molecular masses of 40 kDa and 46 kDa, exposed on the surface of CEF and lymphoid cells. Competition experiments indicated that these proteins might represent the common receptor sites of IBDV.


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