Adsorption of Rhesus monkey erythrocytes to the plasma membranes of measles virus infected cells is frequently carried out to detect the presence of plasma membrane-associated measles virus hemagglutinin. The hemagglutinin is a viral genome-coded structural glycoprotein of the measles virion that is associated with the plasma membrane of the host cell during measles virus replication. BGM/MV, anon-virogenic line of African green monkey kidney cells persistently-infected with measles virus, adsorbed Rhesus monkey erythrocytes in an inverse fashion relative to the number of cells present in the culture and the time post-seeding. Serological studies employing the hemadsorption-inhibition and membrane immunofluorescence assay procedures, suggested that this phenomenon was not mediated by the viral hemagglutinin. Assays for Simian virus-5 and mycoplasma, contaminating agents that induce erythrocyte adsorption, were negative. Incubation of BGM/MV cells at 33°C or with graded concentrations of fetal calf serum, to stimulate the metabolism of resting (Go) cells, suggested that adsorption was related to a phase(s) of the cell growth cycle other than Go₁, for adsorption was prolonged and stimulated in a dose-response fashion, respectively. Comparative adsorption studies employing the parent cell line (BGM), not infected with measles virus, were performed using various species of erythrocytes. While both cell lines adsorbed Rhesus monkey erythrocytes in an inverse fashion relative to cell density, differences were noted in the adsorption of some of the other species of erythrocytes. These data suggest that Rhesus monkey erythrocyte adsorption to BGM/MV cells was mediated by a receptor(s) of cellular origin.

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