Transcriptional Response of a Common Permissive Cell Type to Infection by Two Diverse Alphaherpesviruses

Neelanjana Ray, L. W. Enquist

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


Pseudorabies virus (PRV) and herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) are distantly related alphaherpesviruses whose natural hosts are pigs and humans, respectively. Adult infections of natural hosts are mild and rarely lethal. However, both viruses are also able to infect other hosts, often with lethal effects. In this report, we use the paradigm of infection of a common permissive cell type and microarray analysis to determine if these two diverse alphaherpesviruses engage similar or different cellular pathways to obtain a common outcome: productive infection. We compared cellular gene expression in growth-arrested, primary rat embryonic fibroblasts that were mock infected or infected with either purified PRV-Becker or HSV-1(F). Infections by either virus affect the transcription of more than 1,500 cellular genes by threefold or more. Few differences are detected early, and the majority of changes occur during the late stages of infection. Remarkably, the transcripts of about 500 genes are regulated in common, while the rest are regulated in a virus-specific manner. Genes whose expression is affected by infection fall into a diverse group of functional classes and cellular pathways. Furthermore, a comparison of the cellular response to HSV-1 infection of primary human and rat fibroblasts revealed unexpected diversity in the transcript profiles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3489-3501
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Insect Science
  • Virology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology


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