Pseudorabies virus (PRV), a swine nuerotropic alphaherpesvirus, is known to invade the central nervous system (CNS) of a variety of animal species through peripherally projecting axons, replicate in the parent nuerons, and then pass trassynaptically to infect other nuerons of a circuit. Studies of the human pathogen herpes simplex virus type 1 have reported differences in the direction of transport of two strains of this virus after direct injection into the primate motor cortex. In the present study we examined the direction of transport of virulent and attenuated strains of PRV, utilizing injections into the rat prefrontal cortex to evaluate specific movement of virus through CNS circuitry. The data demonstrate strain-dependent patterns of infection consistent with bidirectional (anterograde and retrograde) transport of virulent virus and undirectional (retrograde) transport of attenuated PRV from the site of injection. The distribution of infected nuerons and the extent of transsynaptic passage also suggest that a release defect in the attenuated strain reduces the apparent rate of viral transport through neuronal circuitry. Finally, injection of different concentrations of virus influenced the onset of replication within a neural circuit. Taken together, these data suggest that viral envelope glycoproteins and virus concentration at the site of injection are important determinants of the rate and direction of viral transport through a multisynaptic circuit in the CNS.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science