Mouse hepatitis virus infection suppresses modulation of mouse spleen T-cell activation

J. M. Cook-Mills, H. G. Munshi, R. L. Perlman, D. A. Chambers*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Natural infection by mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) can affect interpretation of immunological studies in mice. MHV, a collective term describing a group of corona viruses, is found in natural infections in over 70% of laboratory mouse populations in the U.S.A. and Canada. Natural outbreaks of MHV in our animal colony afforded us the opportunity to study MHV-induced immunosuppression as well as the effects of MHV infection on neurotransmitter immunomodulation. Concanavalin A (Con A)-stimulated DNA synthesis by spleen T lymphocytes from MHV-infected mice was 20-50% that of non-infected mice. The MHV infection also altered neurotransmitter modulation of spleen T-lymphcoyte activation. In contrast to noradrenaline ablation of Con A-activated DNA synthesis by spleen lymphocytes from non-infected mice, DNA synthesis by the infected group was not inhibited by noradrenaline or dibutyryl-cAMP. These effects of MHV infection were specific for spleen T lymphocytes since MHV infection did not alter ConA stimulation of thymocytes, lipopolysaccharide stimulation of spleen B lymphocytes, or noradrenaline inhibition of thymocyte and B-cell DNA synthesis. MHV infection also did not alter spleen T-lymphocyte subset proportions. Thus, MHV infection inhibits spleen T-lymphocyte activation and blocks in vitro catecholamine and cAMP regulation of spleen T-cell activation but does not affect activation of thymic cells or spleen B cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)542-545
Number of pages4
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology

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