1887

Abstract

(PRRSV) can evade the host immune system, which results in prolonged virus replication for several weeks to several months. To date, the mechanisms of PRRSV immune evasion have not been investigated in detail. One possible immune-evasion strategy is to avoid incorporation of viral proteins into the plasma membrane of infected cells, as this prevents recognition by virus-specific antibodies and consequent cell lysis either by the classical complement pathway or by antibody-dependent, cell-mediated cytotoxicity. In this study, viral proteins were not observed in the plasma membrane of -infected macrophages by using confocal microscopy or flow cytometry. Subsequently, the sensitivity of PRRSV-infected macrophages towards antibody-dependent, complement-mediated cell lysis (ADCML) was determined by using an ADCML assay. A non-significant percentage of PRRSV-infected cells were killed in the assay, showing that PRRSV-infected macrophages are protected against ADCML. PRRSV proteins were not detected in the plasma membrane of -infected alveolar macrophages and ADCML was also not observed. Together, these data indicate that viral proteins are not incorporated into the plasma membrane of PRRSV-infected macrophages, which makes infected cells invisible to PRRSV-specific antibodies. This absence of viral proteins on the cell surface could explain the protection against ADCML observed for and PRRSV-infected macrophages, and may play a role in virus persistence.

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2006-08-01
2019-11-18
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