Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) distribution and replication in tissues and immune cells in early infected pigs.Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2007 Feb 15; 115(3-4):261-72.VI
Replication of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) in pigs, as measured by spliced capsid mRNA (Cap mRNA) and viral DNA, was investigated following experimental infection. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), and tissue from bronchial lymph nodes (BLN), inguinal lymph nodes (ILN), tonsils, lungs, liver, kidneys, spleen and thymus from infected pigs on different days post-infection (DPI) were assessed. PCV2 replication differed dramatically between tissues from the same infected pig. The virus actively replicated in most tested tissues at 14DPI in association with increased PCV2 associated lesions and PCV2 antigen levels, although no clinical signs correlated with PCV2 associated disease were observed in infected pigs during the course of the study. The PCV2 Cap mRNA was detected only at 13DPI in PBMCs from infected pigs, suggesting replication of the virus in circulating blood is transient and not a major site for PCV2 replication in vivo. Evaluation of the Cap mRNA and viral DNA synthesis in T and B lymphocyte and monocyte populations from PBMCs and BLN at various intervals post-inoculation revealed replication of PCV2 in all cell subpopulations; however, viral replication in B lymphocytes was greater than observed in mononuclear cells isolated from BLN at 14DPI indicating that B lymphocytes may be an important cell population for PCV2 replication. These findings further our understanding of the cell types permissive for PCV2 replication and the pathogenesis of PCV2 infection in vivo.