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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1995 Jan 26;206(3):863-9.

Susceptibility of human T-lymphotropic virus type I infected cell line MT-2 to hepatitis C virus infection.

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Virology Division, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.


To obtain a hepatitis C virus (HCV) proliferation system, we examined the susceptibility of various cultured cell lines to HCV infection. We found that a human T-lymphotropic virus type I infected cell line MT-2 was fairly sensitive to HCV infection. Using the polymerase chain reaction, intracellular positive-stranded HCV RNA was detected until at least 15 days postinoculation (p.i.). Intracellular negative-stranded HCV RNA was also detected at 10 days p.i., although not at 7 days p.i., suggesting that HCV is replicating in MT-2 cells 10 days p.i. Sequence analysis of hypervariable region 1 (HVR1) revealed that HVR1 sequences from cells 10 days p.i. had become homogeneous, although HVR1 sequences from the inoculum showed the typical quasi-species. We also found a lack of anti-HVR1 antibody against the HVR1 species which became homogeneous at 10 days p.i., although we easily detected antibody against the other HVR1 species obtained from the inoculum. These findings suggest that MT-2 cells are susceptible to HCV infection and are capable of supporting HCV replication.

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