INACTIVATION OF TWO ARBOVIRUSES AND THEIR ASSOCIATED INFECTIOUS NUCLEIC ACIDS
ARMY BIOLOGICAL LABS FREDERICK MD
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The inactivation of 2 distinct but related arboviruses Eastern and Venezuelan equine encephalitis by heat 50 C, nitrous acid HNO2, and ultraviolet light was studied in relation to the infectious ribonucleic acid RNA. The 2 viruses could be distinguished by their heat inactivation curves. Although the curves for both viruses were approximately biphasic, their phases were reversed. The heat inactivation rates of recoverable RNA from the heated virus particle and of extracted RNA from unheated virus were less than those for the virus. The results suggested that heat acts first on the surface lipoprotein component and then on the nucleic acid. The kinetics of inactivation of the 2 viruses and their RNAs by HNO2 suggested that inactivation of both surface protein and necleic acid began simultaneously but that the latter inactivation was slower. The respective viruses and their recoverable RNA could be distinguished by their rates of inactivation. The results with ultraviolet irradiation agreed with the concept of primary damage to the nucleic acid.