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J Virol. 1990 May;64(5):2298-308.

Human immunodeficiency virus pseudotypes with expanded cellular and species tropism.

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Department of Biology, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla 92093.


One mechanism for expanding the cellular tropism of a virus is through the formation of phenotypically mixed particles or pseudotypes, a process commonly occurring during viral assembly in cells infected with two or more viruses. We report here that dual infection of cells with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and a murine amphotropic retrovirus leads to the production of HIV pseudotypes that have acquired the host range of the amphotropic retrovirus and are capable of infecting not only CD4- human cells but also mouse cells. The replication of the HIV pseudotypes in the various CD4- cells was determined by measuring the appearance of HIV antigens in the supernatants, by cocultivation of CD4+ CEM cells with the infected CD4- cells, and in some cases by assaying the culture supernatants directly for infectious virus. Of the cells tested, human foreskin fibroblasts were the best host cells, and by in situ cytohybridization, we were able to document that all cells in the culture were infected. In addition, the temporal appearance of HIV-specific proteins in the HIV pseudotype-infected fibroblasts was similar to that seen in CD4+ CEM cells. If the human fibroblasts were first infected with the amphotropic retrovirus, they demonstrated the property of superinfection exclusion and were resistant to subsequent infection by the HIV pseudotype. In other cell lines, including the human glioblastoma-derived cell line U373MG, HeLa cells, BALB/c mouse embryo cells, and SC-1 wild mouse cells, although the HIV pseudotype infection appeared to be less efficient, substantial amounts of HIV were nevertheless produced. These results indicate that the HIV (amphotropic retrovirus) pseudotypes may be useful for studying the molecular biology of HIV infections in a wide range of cells.

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