The cytotoxicity of vaccinia-immune rabbit spleen cells against autochthonous, allogeneic, and xenogeneic vaccinia-infected target cells was studied by using the 51Cr release assay. The results showed that whereas effector cells from rabbit spleen could not lyse the xenogeneic target cells, there was no consistent difference in lysis of autochthonous and allogeneic targets. Antibody-mediated cytotoxicity showed the resistance to cell-mediated lysis in this system not to be the result of reduced virus antigen on the cell surface. These data also showed the established cell line RK13 was markedly more sensitive to immune spleen cell lysis than short-term rabbit skin fibroblast cultures. The data suggested that it is possible to develop standardized tests to evaluate cell-mediated immunity to virus infections in a noninbred population.

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