A rescue system for measles virus from cloned cDNA was established using CHO/hSLAM cells (Chinese hamster ovary cells expressing a measles virus receptor, signaling lymphocyte activation molecule), LO-T7-1 virus (the Lister vaccine strain of vaccinia virus expressing the T7 RNA polymerase under the control of the early/late p7.5 promoter), and caspase inhibitor. LO-T7-1 drove efficiently the T7 promoter in CHO/hSLAM cells. Rescue efficiency with LO-T7-1 was not as high as that with the vTF7-3 strain based on a neurovirulent vaccinia virus, but was increased by using a caspase inhibitor to block apoptosis of CHO/hSLAM cells induced by LO-T7-1. These modifications resulted in a measles virus rescue efficiency that was even higher than that of previous systems. This safer and more efficient system will facilitate further the genetic manipulation of measles virus in basic research and virus vector development.
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