To investigate the effect of persistent measles virus infection on signal transduction in cells of neuronal origin, the mouse neuroblastoma cell line NS20Y/MS, which is persistently infected with measles virus, was used. The results demonstrate an approximate 50% increase in total phosphorylation and a similar increase in protein kinase C (PKC) activity. Western blot analysis with anti-total PKC or anti-PKC-α antibodies revealed a significant increase in the level of an 80K immunoreactive PKC in NS20Y/MS cells. Following incubation of NS20Y/MS cells with polyclonal anti-measles virus antibodies, which down-regulate the level of measles virus proteins, total and PKC-mediated phosphorylation returned to the basal level of uninfected cells. This effect was reversible and removal of the antibodies resulted in restoration of the high level of total and PKC-mediated phosphorylation. The release of infectious measles virus was strongly inhibited by incubation of NS20Y/MS cells with the PKC inhibitor, 1-(5-isoquinolinylsulphonyl)-2-methylpiperazine (H-7). These results demonstrate that measles virus induces elevation in cellular phosphorylation which is essential for measles virus production.
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