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Virology. 1989 Feb;168(2):267-73.

Human immunodeficiency virus infection studied in CD4-expressing human-murine T-cell hybrids.

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Central Laboratory of the Netherlands Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection was studied by means of CD4-expressing human-murine T-cell hybrids, containing a variable amount of human chromosomes. Fusion of the HPRT- murine cell line BW5147 with human T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia or normal human blood cells resulted in a panel of human-murine T-cell hybrids. For this study, we used four hybrids containing all or several human chromosomes, which all expressed the CD4 antigen, as assessed by different anti-CD4 monoclonal antibodies (e.g., OKT4A, Leu-3a, and MT151) and, in addition, a variable number of other human T-cell antigens. For infection, HTLV-IIIB-infected H9 cells, pretreated with mitomycin C, and cell-free concentrated supernatants from these cells were used. In cells of inoculated cultures of the CD4+ T-cell hybrids, no viral antigen could be demonstrated. Culture supernatants of inoculated hybrids, except for an initial rise due to the virus inoculum, never showed reverse transcriptase activity above background. Cocultivation of these cell cultures with H9 cells did not result in detectable virus replication. Cocultivation of CD4-expressing hybrid cells with HIV-infected cells did not result in syncytium formation. Moreover, these hybrids were resistent to infection with vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-HIV pseudotypes. These findings imply that expression of the CD4 antigen on the cell surface is not sufficient for productive infection with HIV. The infectivity block observed in these hybrids seems to occur at the level of virus penetration, presumably at the stage of membrane fusion events.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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