In the present study, the outcome of an inoculation of equine peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) with equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1) was studied . Cytoplasmic and plasma membrane expression of viral antigens, intra- and extracellular virus titres, and plaque formation in co-culture were determined. EHV-1 replicated in monocytes, although in a highly restricted way. Viral antigens were found at maximum levels (8·7% of the monocytes) at 12 h post-infection. The infection was productive in 0·16% of the monocytes. The virus yield was 10 TCID per productive cell. In a population of resting lymphocytes, 0·9% of cells were infected and less than 0·05% produced infectious virus. After prestimulation with different mitogens, the number of infected lymphocytes increased four to twelve times. The susceptible lymphocytes were T-lymphocytes. In mitogen-stimulated lymphocytes, clear expression of viral antigens was found on the plasma membrane.


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