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Contact: Morgan Kelly
mgnkelly@princeton.edu
609-258-5729
Princeton University

Mitochondrial Motion

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Caption: Princeton University researchers made the first observation in neurons that common strains of herpes thrive by hijacking the transportation of a cell's mitochondria, which regulate a cell's energy supply, communication with other cells, and self-destruction response to infection. Using live-cell imaging, the Princeton researchers observed that pseudorabies virus -- a model herpes virus that infects animals -- stopped all mitochondrial motion in rat neuron axons, which connect to and allow communication with other neurons. The researchers saw similar results with herpes simplex virus 1, a sexually transmitted infection that is extremely common in humans and causes cold sores and other lesions. Both viruses belong to the herpes subfamily alpha-herpes viruses, which includes the viruses that cause diseases such as chicken pox and shingles.

Credit: Tal Kramer

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Related news release: To spread, nervous system viruses sabotage cell, hijack transportation


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