Long term intraparenchymal ig secretion after acute viral encephalitis in mice

William R. Tyor, Steven Wesselingh, Beth Levine, Diane E. Griffin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Oligoclonal bands in the cerebrospinal fluid indicate intrathecal synthesis of Ig of restricted heterogeneity and are associated with a number of central nervous system inflammatory diseases. To gain better insight into the persistence of oligoclonal bands found in the central nervous system we studied mice infected with Sindbis virus (SV), a RNA virus that causes an acute, nonfatal encephalitis in mice. SV was inoculated intracerebrally into weanling mice and brains and spleens were harvested at various time points long after the acute encephalitis had resolved. A modified enzyme-linked immunoassay was used to study cultured B cells separated from the brain and spleen for their Ig isotype expression and specificity for SV. We used the polymerase chain reaction technique to detect SV RNA in brain. Three mo after inoculation 47% of the B cells found in brain are secreting antibody specific for SV structural proteins. By 1 yr 62% are SV specific. B cells secreting IgG2a predominate. Polymerase chain reaction data indicate that despite complete clearance of infectious virus by 7 days SV RNA is still present in brain at least 6 mo after infection. The data indicate that B cells in brain secrete antibody to SV long after the acute encephalitis has resolved. The persistence of SV RNA suggests that viral protein may continue to be made, providing the impetus for the continued presence of SV-specific B cells in the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4016-4020
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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