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Limited replication of human cytomegalovirus in a trophoblast cell line

Hyde, Kadeem, Sultana, Nowshin, Tran, Andy C., Bileckaja, Narina, Donald, Claire L., Kohl, Alain, Stanton, Richard J. ORCID: and Strang, Blair L. 2021. Limited replication of human cytomegalovirus in a trophoblast cell line. Journal of General Virology 102 (11) , 1683. 10.1099/jgv.0.001683

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Several viruses, including human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), are thought to replicate in the placenta. However, there is little understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in HCMV replication in this tissue. We investigated replication of HCMV in the extravillous trophoblast cell line SGHPL-4, a commonly used model of HCMV replication in the placenta. We found limited HCMV protein expression and virus replication in SGHPL-4 cells. This was associated with a lack of trophoblast progenitor cell protein markers in SGHPL-4 cells, suggesting a relationship between trophoblast differentiation and limited HCMV replication. We proposed that limited HCMV replication in trophoblast cells is advantageous to vertical transmission of HCMV, as there is a greater opportunity for vertical transmission when the placenta is intact and functional. Furthermore, when we investigated the replication of other vertically transmitted viruses in SGHPL-4 cells we found some limitation to replication of Zika virus, but not herpes simplex virus. Thus, limited replication of some, but not all, vertically transmitted viruses may be a feature of trophoblast cells.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Systems Immunity Research Institute (SIURI)
Additional Information: This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial License
Publisher: Microbiology Society
ISSN: 0022-1317
Funders: MRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 November 2021
Date of Acceptance: 10 September 2021
Last Modified: 09 May 2023 16:35

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