Mapping the genetic determinants of pathogenicity and plaque phenotype in swine vesicular disease virus. (1/5)

A series of recombinant viruses were constructed using infectious cDNA clones of the virulent J1'73 (large plaque phenotype) and the avirulent H/3'76 (small plaque phenotype) strains of swine vesicular disease virus to identify the genetic determinants of pathogenicity and plaque phenotype. Both traits could be mapped to the region between nucleotides (nt) 2233 and 3368 corresponding to the C terminus of VP3, the whole of VP1, and the N terminus of 2A. In this region, there are eight nucleotide differences leading to amino acid changes between the J1'73 and the H/3'76 strains. Site-directed mutagenesis of individual nucleotides from the virulent to the avirulent genotype and vice versa indicated that A at nt 2832, encoding glycine at VP1-132, and G at nt 3355, encoding arginine at 2APRO-20, correlated with a large-plaque phenotype and virulence in pigs, irrespective of the origin of the remainder of the genome. Of these two sites, 2APRO-20 appeared to be the dominant determinant for the large-plaque phenotype but further studies are required to elucidate their relative importance for virulence in pigs.  (+info)

X-ray structure of a native calicivirus: structural insights into antigenic diversity and host specificity. (2/5)

Caliciviruses, grouped into four genera, are important human and veterinary pathogens with a potential for zoonosis. In these viruses, capsid-related functions such as assembly, antigenicity, and receptor interactions are predominantly encoded in a single protein that forms an icosahedral capsid. Understanding of the immunologic functions and pathogenesis of human caliciviruses in the Norovirus and Sapovirus genera is hampered by the lack of a cell culture system or animal models. Much of our understanding of these viruses, including the structure, has depended on recombinant capsids. Here we report the atomic structure of a native calicivirus from the Vesivirus genus that exhibits a broad host range possibly including humans and map immunological function onto a calicivirus structure. The vesivirus structure, despite a similar architectural design as seen in the recombinant norovirus capsid, exhibits novel features and indicates how the unique modular organization of the capsid protein with interdomain flexibility, similar to an antibody structure with a hinge and an elbow, integrates capsid-related functions and facilitates strain diversity in caliciviruses. The internally located N-terminal arm participates in a novel network of interactions through domain swapping to assist the assembly of the shell domain into an icosahedral scaffold, from which the protruding domain emanates. Neutralization epitopes localize to three hypervariable loops in the distal portion of the protruding domain surrounding a region that exhibits host-specific conservation. These observations suggest a mechanism for antigenic diversity and host specificity in caliciviruses and provide a structural framework for vaccine development.  (+info)

Bile acids promote the expression of hepatitis C virus in replicon-harboring cells. (3/5)

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a cause of chronic liver disease, with more than 170 million persistently infected individuals worldwide. Although the combination therapy of alpha interferon (IFN-alpha) and ribavirin is effective for chronic HCV infection, around half of all patients infected with HCV genotype 1 fail to show sustained virologic responses and remain chronically infected. Previously, we demonstrated that bile acids were essential for growth of porcine enteric calicivirus in cell culture in association with down-regulation of IFN responses. Because hepatocytes are exposed to high concentrations of bile acids in the liver, we hypothesized that bile acids have similar effects on HCV replication. We incubated HCV replicon-harboring cells (genotype 1b, Con1) in the presence of various bile acids and monitored the expression of HCV RNA and protein (NS5B). The addition of an individual bile acid (deoxycholic acid, chenodeoxycholic acid, ursodeoxycholic acid, or glycochenodeoxycholic acid) in the medium increased the levels of HCV RNA and proteins up to fivefold at 48 h of incubation. An antagonist of bile acid receptor farnesoid X receptor (FXR), Z-guggulsterone, reduced the bile acid-mediated increase of HCV RNA. When IFN (alpha or gamma) and each bile acid were incubated together, we observed that bile acid significantly reduced the anti-HCV effect of IFN. These results indicated that bile acids are factors in the failure of IFN treatment for certain patients infected with HCV genotype 1. Our finding may also contribute to the establishment of better regimens for treatment of chronic HCV infections by including agents altering the bile acid-mediated FXR pathway.  (+info)

Analysis of the serologic relationship among San Miguel sea lion virus and vesicular exanthema of swine virus isolates. Application of the western blot assay for detection of antibodies in swine sera to these virus types. (4/5)

Caliciviruses are positive-sense single-stranded RNA viruses with a single capsid protein. The serotypes of the marine mammal calicivirus, San Miguel sea lion virus (SMSV), are antigenically related to vesicular exanthema of swine virus (VESV) and are potentially hazardous to swine. Western blot assays using purified SMSV serotypes 1 and 4 were used to further examine the serologic relationship among SMSV and VESV isolates. With the exception of SMSV 8 and SMSV 12, rabbit polyclonal antisera generated against all the available SMSV and VESV isolates reacted positively, as assessed by western blot, with purified capsid protein from SMSV 1 and SMSV 4. Consequently, the SMSV 8 and SMSV 12 virus isolates may not be members of the SMSV/VESV calicivirus group. Using antisera from pigs experimentally inoculated with SMSV and VESV as positive controls, a western blot assay for these virus types was utilized to check for the presence of antibodies to calciviruses in swine sera. Sera from colostrum-deprived gnotobiotic pigs were used as a negative control in all experiments. Examination of sera from domestic and feral swine collected in Iowa, California, and Florida was completed using this technique. The presence of antibodies to these virus types was not detected in any of the porcine sera tested.  (+info)

Genetic relatedness of the caliciviruses: San Miguel sea lion and vesicular exanthema of swine viruses constitute a single genotype within the Caliciviridae. (5/5)

The San Miguel sea lion viruses (SMSV) and vesicular exanthema of swine viruses (VESV) are related morphologically and antigenically, but little has been done to determine their genotypic relationship to each other and to other caliciviruses. To examine this relationship, reverse transcriptase PCRs were performed by using oligonucleotide primer sets designed to amplify portions of the 2C RNA helicase-like and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase regions with total cellular RNA purified from virus-infected cell cultures as a template. The 2C RNA helicase primers directed the amplification of this region from eight SMSV serotypes, five VESV serotypes, and four related viruses. The RNA polymerase primer sets amplified products from all these viruses except one. Phylogenetic comparison of the caliciviruses demonstrated that SMSV, VESV, and four related viruses are closely related while being distinct from feline calicivirus, the human caliciviruses (small, round-structured viruses), and rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus and that they should be classified as a single genotype within the Caliciviridae.  (+info)