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Suppression of Retroviral Propagation and Disease by Suramin in Murine Systems

Ruth M. Ruprecht, Lucia D. Rossoni, William A. Haseltine and Samuel Broder
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 82, No. 22 (Nov. 15, 1985), pp. 7733-7737
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/26450
Page Count: 5
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Suppression of Retroviral Propagation and Disease by Suramin in Murine Systems
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Abstract

Retroviral propagation crucially depends on reverse transcriptase (RT). We have developed murine models to test the biological effectiveness of the RT inhibitor suramin. The drug was active in our assay system, which includes (i) inhibition of RT activity in the murine T-cell tropic virus SL3-3 and Rauscher murine leukemia virus (MuLV), (ii) inhibition of plaque formation in the XC plaque assay, (iii) inhibition of viral infection of cultured murine T cells, and (iv) inhibition of splenomegaly induced by Rauscher MuLV in BALB/c mice. Suramin decreases viral titers significantly, even if started 36 hr after infection. Viral titers and number of infected cells increased to control levels after removal of the drug. BALB/c mice treated i.v. with 40 mg of suramin per kg twice per week following infection with Rauscher MuLV showed a 35% decrease in splenomegaly. Suramin is an active antiretroviral agent whose effect on retroviral propagation is reversible. We conclude that it acts as a virustatic drug and that long-term administration of suramin will be necessary if it is used for experimental treatment of human retroviral illnesses such as the acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

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