Mice immunosuppressed by murine retrovirus infection (MAIDS) are susceptible to cytomegalovirus retinitis

Richard D. Dix, Carolyn Cray, Scott W. Cousins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Although various methods of immunosuppression have been used to enhance susceptibility of mice to murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) retinitis, none reproduce the unique complexity of immune deficiency experienced by patients during the progression of AIDS. C57BL/6 mice are susceptible to a retrovirus-induced murine acquired immune deficiency syndrome (MAIDS), characterized by progressive immune dysfunction which shares many features with AIDS. We therefore evaluated the frequency and severity of MCMV retinitis in C57BL/6 mice with MAIDS. Following subretinal inoculation of MCMV, nearly 90% of mice with MAIDS developed a necrotizing retinitis 8 to 10 days postinfection, whereas retinitis was observed in only 8% of age-matched immunocompetent control mice. Histopathologic analysis of the retinitis that developed in mice with MAIDS revealed features similar to those found in AIDS-related CMV retinitis. Eyes from MAIDS animals also contained on average higher amounts of infectious virus when compared with eyes from control animals. We conclude that retrovirus-induced immunosuppression increases susceptibility of C57BL/6 mice to MCMV retinitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)587-595
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Eye Research
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1994


  • AIDS
  • Cytomegalovirus retinitis
  • Murine AIDS (MAIDS)
  • Murine cytomegalovirus
  • Retrovirus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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