The Journal of Infectious Diseases vol:185 issue:1 pages:36-44
Recently, individuals have been identified who possess T cell responses to herpes simplex virus (HSV) antigens despite the absence of detectable anti-HSV antibodies in their serum. The significance of this immune seronegative status is unclear, but it could indicate resistance to overt HSV infection. The aims of the present study were to investigate whether genetic differences in receptors used by HSV for cell entry (herpesvirus entry mediator [HVEM], nectin-1, and nectin-2) could be detected in immune seronegative individuals. Coding polymorphisms were identified in the HVEM and nectin-1 genes. The variant receptor proteins were expressed, and their ability to bind the viral ligand glycoprotein D and to mediate HSV entry after transient transfection into normally resistant cells was compared with that of their wild-type counterparts. HSV entry activity in wild-type and variant forms of the receptors was indistinguishable, which indicates that the polymorphisms observed are unlikely to explain the possible restrictions on HSV replication or spread in immune seronegative individuals.