Send to

Choose Destination
Virology. 1995 Dec 20;214(2):541-9.

Development of a sustainable chick cell line infected with Marek's disease virus.

Author information

Department of Animal Science, Michigan State University, East Lansing 48824, USA.


Marek's disease virus (MDV) is a highly infectious and cell-associated avian herpesvirus. Fully productive infections with MDV are restricted to feather follicle epithelium of afflicted birds. In culture, MDV infection of primary chick (CEF) and duck embryo fibroblast cells is semiproductive. Passage of MDV and production of MDV vaccines is limited to these primary cell-associated systems. The finite life span of primary avian cell cultures has hampered efforts to use positive selection in generation of recombinant MDV and complicates studies of temporal gene regulation. In this report, we describe continuous chick fibroblast cell lines (MDV OU2.2 and MDV OU2.1) which support MDV replication. Southern blot and PCR analyses demonstrate that these cell lines harbor MDV DNA. Western blot analyses indicate that MDV OU2.2 cells express at least a limited set of viral proteins, pp38 and pp14, similar to that seen in MDV-lymphoblastoid cells. Presence of distinct plaques in confluent MDV OU2.2 cell monolayers is consistent with cytolytic semiproductive infection, similar to that observed in primary CEF. MDV OU2.2 cells are capable of transferring MDV infection to primary CEF cultures and inducing clinical signs of Marek's disease in susceptible birds. MDV OU2.2 cells have maintained a MDV-positive phenotype for over 16 months of active culture. Southern blot hybridization of MDV OU2.2 cell DNA reveals a distinct expansion of the MDV BamHI H fragment in a subset of viral genomes following long-term cultivation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center