Paramyxovirus fusion: Real-time measurement of parainfluenza virus 5 virus-cell fusion

Sarah A. Connolly, Robert A. Lamb*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Although cell-cell fusion assays are useful surrogate methods for studying virus fusion, differences between cell-cell and virus-cell fusion exist. To examine paramyxovirus fusion in real time, we labeled viruses with fluorescent lipid probes and monitored virus-cell fusion by fluorimetry. Two parainfluenza virus 5 (PIV5) isolates (W3A and SER) and PIV5 containing mutations within the fusion protein (F) were studied. Fusion was specific and temperature-dependent. Compared to many low pH-dependent viruses, the kinetics of PIV5 fusion was slow, approaching completion within several minutes. As predicted from cell-cell fusion assays, virus containing an F protein with an extended cytoplasmic tail (rSV5 F551) had reduced fusion compared to wild-type virus (W3A). In contrast, virus-cell fusion for SER occurred at near wild-type levels, despite the fact that this isolate exhibits a severely reduced cell-cell fusion phenotype. These results support the notion that virus-cell and cell-cell fusion have significant differences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-212
Number of pages10
Issue number2
StatePublished - Nov 25 2006


  • Flourescence
  • Parainfluenza virus 5
  • Paramyxovirus membrane fusion
  • Pyrene
  • R18
  • Simian virus 5
  • Virus entry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology

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