Indexed on: 21 Apr '01Published on: 21 Apr '01Published in: Virology
Coxsackieviruses B (CVB) (B1-B6), positive-strand RNA viruses, cause a variety of diseases. CVB4 may have a causal role in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. IFN-alpha inhibits CVB replication; however, the mechanism is not well known. The interferon-alpha-inducible human MxA protein exerts an antiviral activity against negative-strand RNA viruses and against Semliki Forest virus, a positive-strand RNA virus. To test the antiviral spectrum of MxA against CVB4, we took advantage of stably transfected Vero cells expressing MxA (Vero/MxA) in 98% of cells. Compared with control cells, in Vero/MxA cells, CVB4 yields were dramatically reduced and expression of the VP1 CVB protein analyzed by immunofluorescence was highly restricted. Furthermore, the accumulation of positive- and negative-strand CVB4 RNA was prevented as shown by in situ hybridization and RT-PCR. These results indicate that the antiviral activity of MxA extends to CVB4 and that its replication cycle is inhibited at an early step in Vero/MxA cells.