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Microbes Infect. 1999 Jul;1(8):601-7.

Antiapoptotic activity of herpes simplex virus type 2: the role of US3 protein kinase gene.

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Department of Virology, School of Medicine, The University of Tokushima, Tokushima, 770-8503, Japan.


In order to determine the ability of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) to suppress apoptosis, we examined the effect of HSV-2 infection on apoptosis induced in HEp-2 cells by treatment with 1 M sorbitol. Although a wild-type strain of HSV-2 induced apoptosis in a significant fraction of the infected cells, HSV-2 could suppress sorbitol-induced apoptosis in a manner similar to that of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), indicating that HSV-2, like HSV-1, has an antiapoptosis gene. Characterization of the cells infected with a US3-deletion mutant of HSV-2 revealed the necessity of a US3 gene in the antiapoptotic activity of this virus.

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