Translocation of a hydrocarbon fluorescent probe between Epstein-Barr virus and lymphoid cells: An assay for early events in viral infection

K. S. Rosenthal, S. Yanovich, M. Inbar, J. L. Strominger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Translocation of the hydrocarbon fluorescent probe diphenylhexatriene (DPH) between membranes was studied by fluorescence polarization (P) analysis. First, using a model system, the high P value (0.324) of DPH-labeled cholesterol/phosphatidylcholine liposomes and the low P value (0.157) of DPH-labeled phosphatidylcholine liposomes allowed detection of DPH translocation between interacting liposomes. This was monitored by the change in P in either direction. Early events during cell-virus interactions were similarly studied by monitoring DPH translocation. The P value of DPH-labeled Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) was significantly higher (0.350-0.392) than the P value of DPH-labeled lymphoid cells (0.238-0.289). Hence, DPH translocation could be detected by changes in P following incubation of DPH-labeled EBV and nonlabeled cells. A marked decrease in P was observed after incubation of DPH-labeled EBV with either nonlabeled lymphoblastoid Raji cells or fresh human B lymphocytes. However, only a slight decrease in P was obtained when DPH-labeled EBV was incubated with either nonlabeled fresh human T lymphocytes or fresh T or B rabbit lymphocytes. Moreover, incubation of fresh human B lymphocytes with the purified C3 component of complement (a putative inhibitor for the EBV receptor) prior to the addition of DPH-labeled EBV abolished the observed decrease in the P value. Most of these experiments were carried out with both the P3HR-1 and the B95-8 strains of EBV. DPH translocation, as determined by fluorescence polarization analysis, is, therefore, measuring some early event during interaction of this enveloped virus and mammalian cells. The potential applicability of this technique to other viruses is illustrated by an experiment with Semliki Forest virus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5076-5080
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1978
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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