Objective: Herpes simplex virus-2 (HSV-2) infections are almost exclusively sexually transmitted. The presence of vaginal gels during sexual activity may have a significant positive or negative impact on viral transmission. Therefore we investigated three off-the-shelf vaginal lubricants and one pH restoring gel to evaluate their impact on HSV-2 replication. Results: HeLa cells were infected with untreated virions and virions incubated with the particular gels. The accumulation of viral genomes was monitored by quantitative PCR (qPCR) method at 24 h post infection. Two of the tested gels had no significant effect on HSV-2 replication at the maximum applied concentration, while two had a strong inhibitory effect (~ 98% reduction of replication). The replication inhibitory effect was observed at various multiplicity of infection (MOI 0.4-6.4) and the two inhibitory gels were also capable of inhibiting the HSV-2 induced cytopathic effect on HeLa cells. The surface tension decreasing activity- A n indication of detergent activity-was strongly correlated with the anti-HSV-2 activity of the gels (R2: 0.88). Our results indicate that off-the-shelf vaginal gels have a markedly different anti-HSV-2 activity that may influence HSV-2 transmission.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)