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J Virol. 1972 Mar;9(3):408-18.

Ribonucleotide reductase activity of synchronized KB cells infected with herpes simplex virus.


The replication of herpes simplex virus (HSV) is unimpeded in KB cells which have been blocked in their capacity to synthesize deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) by high levels of thymidine (TdR). Studies showed that the presence of excess TdR did not prevent host or viral DNA replication in HSV-infected cells. In fact, more cellular DNA was synthesized in infected TdR-blocked cells than in uninfected TdR-blocked cells. This implies that the event which relieved the TdR block was not specific for viral DNA synthesis but allowed some cellular DNA synthesis to occur. These results suggested that HSV has a means to insure a pool of deoxycytidylate derivatives for DNA replication in the presence of excess TdR. We postulated that a viral-induced ribonucleotide reductase was present in the cell after infection which was not inhibited by thymidine triphosphate (TTP). Accordingly, comparable studies of the ribonucleotide reductase found in infected and uninfected KB cells were made. We established conditions that would permit the study of viral-induced enzymes in logarithmically growing KB cells. A twofold stimulation in reductase activity was observed by 3 hr after HSV-infection. Reductase activity in extracts taken from infected cells was less sensitive to inhibition by exogenous (TTP) than the enzyme activity present in uninfected cells. In fact, the enzyme extracted from infected cells functioned at 60% capacity even in the presence of 2 mm TTP. These results support the idea that a viral-induced ribonucleotide reductase is present after HSV infection of KB cells and that this enzyme is relatively insensitive to inhibition by exogenous TTP.

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