The usefulness of the deembryonation technic has been analyzed as a tool in the study of various problems in the growth cycle of influenza virus in the entodermal cells of the allantoic of chick embryos.
Various improvements in the deembryonation technic have been described.
The method readily permits repeated sampling of the medium at various stages after infection (cumulative growth curves) or frequent exchanges of the medium (differential growth curve). However, the yield of infectious virus or of hemagglutinins is less than that observed in the intact chick embryo. The difference observed is greater than can be accounted for by the reduction in the available host cells and is assumed, therefore, to be due in part to interruption of blood and nutrient supply to the cells. This handicap can be overcome by the combined in ovo-deembryonation technic, in which deembryonation is performed at any desired time after infection of the intact chick embryo, and the medium is collected and analyzed after 1 to 3 hours of further incubation.
The value of the technic is demonstrated by the fact that liberation of virus from infected cells can be detected earlier than in the intact egg. Furthermore, it continues at a nearly constant rate for many hours, thus proving to be erroneous previous inference which had been based upon in ovo experiments.
The technic also permits readily the addition and subsequent removal of substances that might interfere with viral propagation. As an example a study was made of the effect of the receptor-destroying enzyme of V. cholerae (RDE) when added to the medium of eggs infected prior to deembryonation. By carefully grading the dose of virus and using an appropriate amount of RDE, one-step growth curves were obtained indicating that those cells not directly invaded by the seed virus were subsequently protected against infection by action of the enzyme. The smaller the amount of virus the less RDE was required in order to note a protective effect. With a decrease in the period of exposure to RDE regeneration of cell receptors became increasingly more apparent in that correspondingly greater amounts of virus were produced and liberated late in the incubation periods. These results confirmed and extended those reported by Stone.
More extensive applications of these technics will be reported in subsequent papers of this series.