A variety of antiviral compounds were examined for their inhibitory effect on measles (SSPE) virus plaque formation in VERO cells. The following compounds inhibited SSPE virus (strain Niigata-1) replication at concentrations that were significantly lower than their minimum cytotoxic concentrations: neplanocin A, neplanocin C, carbocyclic 3-deazaadenosine, 9-(trans-2', trans-3'-dihydroxycyclopent-4'-enyl)adenine, 9-(trans-2',trans-3'-dihydroxycyclopent-4'-enyl)-3-deazaadenine, (RS)-3-adenin-9-yl-2-hydroxypropanoic acid isobutyl ester, carbodine, cyclopentenyl cytosine, 3-deazaguanine, pyrazofurin, ribavirin and 6-azauridine. As the most selective inhibitors of SSPE virus replication emerged pyrazofurin, 3-deazaguanine, 6-azauridine and ribavirin. These compounds were further examined for their relative potency against a number of measles (SSPE) virus strains. Their order of (decreasing) potency was pyrazofurin greater than 6-azauridine approximately 3-deazaguanine greater than ribavirin. Amantadine, inosiplex and glycyrrhizin, that were also included in these assays, did not show appreciable activity against any of the measles (SSPE) virus strains.