Human cytomegalovirus productively infects primary differentiated macrophages

Carlos E. Ibanez, Rachel Schrier, Peter Ghazal, Clayton Wiley, Jay A. Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

282 Scopus citations


Monocytes are one of the predominant cell types in the peripheral blood that are infected by human cytomegalovirus (HCMV). Although virus can be detected in these cells in vivo, HCMV replication in cultured monocytes has been unsuccessful. In this study, we demonstrate efficient HCMV replication in cultured monocytes. HCMV permissiveness in these cells was dependent on nonadherent cell-induced stimulation of the monocyte, with subsequent morphological differentiation into macrophages. Approximately 40% of the cells infected by virus were detected by immunofluorescent staining with both immediate-early and late antibodies. In addition, viral plaque assays demonstrated significant productive infection of macrophages. These observations are consistent with the suggestion that the monocyte/macrophage serves as a source of viral amplification and dissemination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6581-6588
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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