A skin test for immunity to human CMV is described in which skin induration is measured after intradermal injection of heat-inactivated Towne strain CMV antigen. Randomly selected healthy young adult males and non-pregnant females were pre-screened for evidence of past infection with CMV using a latex agglutination test. Each individual was inoculated with 100 ul of test antigen (50 ug) prepared from serum-free supernatants of CMV-infected MRC-5 cells (inactivated at 56°C for 6 hrs). Candida extract (1:1000) and non-infected MRC-5 cell lysates. CMV seropositive individuals elicited positive skin reactions to both the Candida extract and the test antigen. No response was observed at the MRC-5 cell lysate inoculation site. Seronegative individuals who were negative to the test antigen at the start of the study, developed a positive response 8 days after intramuscular immunization with live attenuated Towne strain CMV. This response also correlated with in vitro CMV- induced lymphocyte proliferation of peripheral blood lymphocytes from the immunized individuals and persisted for at least 93 days.

In guinea pig experiments with human CMV, those animals immunized with purified CMV, a virus envelope preparation, or a 130-55K glycoprotein complex (isolated by immunoadsorbent column chromatography), developed strong skin reactions to intradermal injection of 5 ug of each of these antigens. A weak reaction was also observed to viral capsid antigen. No reactions were observed in non-immune animals.

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Gupta, R., Gonczol, E., Lanacone, J. et al. DERMAL REACTIVITY TO HUMAN CYTOMEGALOVIRUS (CMV). Pediatr Res 21, 325 (1987).

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