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Structural investigation of C6/36 and Vero cell cultures infected with a Brazilian Zika virus

Tags: | September 3rd, 2017

Authors: Barreto-Vieira DF, Jacome FC, da Silva MAN, et al.

Published in: PLoS One. 2017;12(9):e0184397

Abstract Zika virus (ZIKV) is a member of the flavivirus genus, and its genome is approximately 10.8 kilobases of positive-strand RNA enclosed in a capsid and surrounded by a membrane. Studies on the replication dynamics of ZIKV are scarce, which limits the development of antiviral agents and vaccines directed against ZIKV. In this study, Aedes albopictus mosquito lineage cells (C6/36 cells) and African green monkey kidney epithelial cells (Vero cells) were inoculated with a ZIKV sample isolated from a Brazilian patient, and the infection was characterized by immunofluorescence staining, phase contrast light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and real-time RT-PCR. The infection was observed in both cell lineages, and ZIKV particles were observed inside lysosomes, the rough endoplasmic reticulum and viroplasm-like structures. The susceptibility of C6/36 and Vero cells to ZIKV infection was demonstrated. Moreover, this study showed that part of the replicative cycle may occur within viroplasm-like structures, which has not been previously demonstrated in other flaviviruses.