Arginine inactivates human herpesvirus 2 and inhibits genital herpesvirus infection
- Authors: Keiko Ikeda, Hisashi Yamasaki, Sawako Minami, Yukiko Suzuki, Kazuko Tsujimoto, Yoshihisa Sekino, Hiroshi Irie, Tsutomu Arakawa, A. Hajime Koyama
Published online on: Thursday, October 4, 2012
- Pages: 1307-1312
- DOI: 10.3892/ijmm.2012.1149
Arginine, among the amino acids, has demonstrated unique properties, including suppression of protein-protein interactions and virus inactivation. We investigated the effects of arginine on the infectivity of human herpesvirus 2 (HHV-2) and the potential application of arginine as a chemotherapeutic agent against genital herpes. Arginine directly inactivated HHV-2 and characterization of the inactivation demonstrated that 1 M arginine at pH 4.3 inactivated the virus more efficiently compared to 0.1 M citrate or 1 M sodium chloride, indicating that neither acidic pH nor ionic strength alone is sufficient for virus inactivation. The effect of arginine was rapid and concentration-dependent. Although virus inactivation was efficient at an acidic pH, arginine inactivated the virus even at a neutral pH, provided that a higher arginine concentration and prolonged incubation time were used. In addition, arginine suppressed the multiplication of HHV-2 under the conditions at which its effect on cell viability was insignificant. Pilot mouse model studies revealed a marked suppression of death by arginine when the mice were infected with HHV-2 through the vaginal route, followed by an intermittent application of acidic arginine by vaginal instillation.