Host cell as well as viral DNA synthesis in human fibroblasts infected with human cytomegalovirus was found to be largely resistant even to high concentrations sodium butyrate. Likewise, production of viral progeny was reduced by 1–2 orders of magnitude but not abolished. On the other hand, the drug allowed (modified) glycosylation only of viral polypeptides whereas that of host proteins was suppressed. Immunofluorescence studies on living cells suggested that butyrate may interfere with processing and intracellular transport of virus-specific surface membrane antigens.

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