Inducibility of Ia molecules on cultivated astrocytes by JHM virus correlates with demyelinating disease susceptibility of animals from which these astrocytes are derived. On the contrary, class I induction of both astrocytes and oligodendrocytes occurs as a consequence of normal cultivation procedures in both susceptible and resistant strains. Increased expression of class I antigens on rat astrocytes and oligodendrocytes is not related to JHM viral infection as it is in the mouse. These data indicate that strain differences in Ia inducibility, rather than inducibility of class I antigens, by JHM virus may explain higher levels of T cell-mediated damage to myelin during infection in susceptible rat strains compared with resistant strains.

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