The morphological and cytochemical changes in HeLa cells infected with herpes virus have been studied at frequent intervals during infection and related to the growth of virus and the multiplicity of the virus inoculum. Infection with a high multiplicity inoculum produced enlargement and extrusion of small ribonucleoprotein (RNP) bodies in the nucleoli (nucleolini) to form RNP bodies in the nucleoplasm (B bodies) beginning ½ hour after infection. 3 hours after infection, RNP of the pars amorpha appeared to diffuse into the adjacent nucleoplasm, where, ½ hour later, the classical type A inclusion or A body first appeared. The A bodies displaced the B bodies and the nucleoli and eventually filled the nucleus. 6 hours after infection, minute granules containing RNA, DNA, and non-histone protein appeared inside the A bodies (A granules) and increased in number until the late stages of infection, when they disappeared. 18 hours after infection, at the time when the A bodies came to fill the nucleus completely, extrusion of RNP from the nucleus produced cytoplasmic masses which have been termed C bodies. B bodies were formed in the majority of cells before the maturation of infectious virus, but the number of B bodies could not be correlated with the amount of virus in the cell or with the multiplicity of the inoculum. It is suggested that the formation of B bodies may be the result of inhibition of the onset of mitotic division by a mechanism which does not inhibit the formation of RNA in the nucleolini. The nature of the A bodies, the A granules, and the C bodies is discussed and it is concluded that the A granules may represent aggregations of maturing virus in the nucleus. The progression of some C mitotic metaphases to the formation of post-C mitotic multinucleated giant cells is described. These are distinct from syncytia formed by cell fusion.

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