Neurologic dysfunctions caused by a molecular clone of feline immunodeficiency virus, FIV-PPR

T. R. Phillips, O. Prospero-Garcia, D. W. Wheeler, P. C. Wagaman, D. L. Lerner, H. S. Fox, L. R. Whalen, F. E. Bloom, J. H. Elder, S. J. Henriksen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


FIV is a lentivirus of domestic cats that causes a spectrum of diseases that is remarkably similar to the clinical syndrome produced by HIV infection in people. Both HIV and FIV has been shown to cause neurologic dysfunction. Specific Pathogen-Free (SPF) cats were placed into one of three groups: FIV-PPR infected; DU-FIV-PPR (a dUTPase mutant of the FIV-PPR clone) infected; or an age-matched control group. In both infected groups, the general clinical signs of infection included lymphadenopathy, oral ulcerations, rough hair coat, and conjuntivitis. Specific neurological changes in the FIV-PPR infected cats included hind limb paresis; delayed righting and pupillary reflexes; behavioral changes; delayed visual and auditory evoked potentials; decreased spinal and peripheral nerve conduction velocities; and marked alterations in sleep patterns. Most of these changes were also observed in the DU-FIV-PPR infected cats. However, these cats tended to have a slightly less severe disease. In this study, we have demonstrated that an infectious molecular clone of FIV closely parallels the disease course of wild type FIV-infected cats. By using a knockout gene mutant of this clone, we were able to demonstrate that the dUTPase gene is not essential for neuropathogenesis. Further use of the FIV-PPR clone should prove useful in determining the essential viral elements that are important in the neuropathogenesis of lentiviral infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-396
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of neurovirology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Electrophysiology
  • FIV
  • HIV
  • Lentivirus
  • Neurologic disease
  • dUTPase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Virology


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