Following the intraperitoneal inoculation of mice with large doses of epidemic influenza virus (50,000 to 1 million intranasal M.L.D.) it can be recovered from the lungs in high concentration, and pulmonary lesions of moderate extent may be observed. The virus reaches its highest titer in the lungs 48 to 72 hours after intraperitoneal injection and may persist for 10 days. Virus may be recovered from the blood in the first 24 hours, but is readily detected in the omentum and peritoneum for 5 to 6 days. Mice which as a result of the intraperitoneal injection of virus show a high concentration of virus in the lungs do not die but become solidly immune to intranasal infection. Moreover, as early as 24 to 48 hours after intraperitoneal inoculation of large amounts of virus the animals may exhibit resistance to infection with fatal doses of virus given intranasally.
Influenza virus given intravenously to mice is rapidly removed from the blood but persists in the lungs and induces pulmonary lesions. Virus can also be recovered from the liver for several days. With subcutaneous inoculation of influenza virus, however, the virus does not reach the blood or lungs in detectable amounts although the regional lymph nodes may yield considerable quantities of the agent.
A brief consideration is presented of the mechanisms of infection and resistance which may be involved.