High efficiency latency and activation of herpes simplex virus in human cells

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Science  17 Sep 1982:
Vol. 217, Issue 4565, pp. 1145-1146
DOI: 10.1126/science.6180477


Herpes simplex virus (HSV) exists in humans in a latent form that can be activated. To characterize the molecular basis of the cell-virus interactions and to analyze the state of the latent HSV genome, an in vitro model system was established. In this system a large fraction of the latently infected cells contain an HSV genome that can be activated. Cell survival was reduced minimally after repression of high multiplicity HSV type 1 (HSV-1) infection of human fibroblast cells with (E)-5-(2-bromovinyl)-2'-deoxyuridine in combination with human leukocyte interferon (IFN-alpha). A minimum of 1 to 3 percent of the surviving cells contained an HSV genome that could be activated either by human cytomegalovirus superinfection or reduction in incubation temperature.