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This review describes the woodchuck and the woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) as an animal model for pathogenesis and therapy of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and disease in humans. The establishment of woodchuck breeding colonies, and use of laboratory-reared woodchucks infected with defined WHV inocula, have enhanced our understanding of the(More)
Woodchucks chronically infected with the woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) were treated with the antiviral drug 1-(2-fluoro-5-methyl-beta-L-arabinofuranosyl)-uracil (L-FMAU) or placebo for 32 weeks. Half the woodchucks in each group then received four injections of surface antigen vaccine during the next 16 weeks. Vaccination alone elicited a low-level(More)
Peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) isolated from woodchucks chronically infected with the woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) carry low levels of nonreplicating WHV DNA. When PBLs from chronic carrier woodchucks were activated in culture with the generalized mitogen lipopolysaccharide (LPS), WHV DNA replication was initiated in cells obtained from one of three(More)
L: -FMAU [1-(2-fluoro-5-methyl-beta,L-arabinofuranosyl) uracil] has been shown to be an effective inhibitor of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and duck hepatitis B virus replication in cell culture and duck hepatitis B virus replication in acutely infected Peking ducks. The woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) and its natural host, the Eastern woodchuck (Marmota monax),(More)
All mammalian hepadnaviruses possess a gene, termed X, that encodes a protein capable of transactivating virus gene expression. The X gene overlaps the polymerase and precore genes as well as two newly identified open reading frames (ORFs) termed ORF5 and ORF6. In this investigation, we examined whether ORF5, ORF6, and the X gene were important for the(More)
Emtricitabine [(-)FTC] [(-)-beta-2', 3'-dideoxy-5-fluoro-3'-thiacytidine] has been shown to be an effective inhibitor of hepatitis B virus (HBV) in cell culture, with a potency and selectivity that are essentially identical to those of lamivudine. The antiviral activity of oral administration of (-)FTC against WHV replication in chronically infected(More)
Cell culture studies in our laboratory and others have previously demonstrated synergistic antiviral activity for combinations of 3TC (lamivudine) and penciclovir against Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) replication and the Duck Hepatitis B Virus (DHBV). Based on these results, a study was designed to determine if an enhanced antiviral effect with combinations of(More)
Acute hepadnavirus infections either resolve or progress to chronicity. Factors that influence chronicity as an outcome of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in humans can be studied experimentally in the woodchuck model. Accordingly, several woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) inocula were characterized. Representative inocula had high titers of infectious(More)
In vitro proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells was used to measure virus-specific cell-mediated immunity (vCMI) following neonatal woodchuck hepatitis virus (WHV) infection. Fifteen neonates were inoculated with the W8 strain of WHV. In 11, infection was resolved, and 4 became chronic carriers. Nineteen neonates were inoculated with the W7(More)