The goal of experiments reported here was to identify the genes that encode capsid proteins VP21 and VP24 of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1). Capsids were isolated from infected cells and the proteins were separated by SDS-PAGE. N-terminal amino acid sequence analysis of partial CNBr digestion products, and of intact VP21, showed that it is encoded within the UL26 open reading frame (ORF) of HSV-1 beginning with codon 248 and probably extending to the end of the ORF (codon 635). Similar analysis of digestion products confirmed that VP24 is specified by codons 1 to 247 at the 5′ end of the UL26 ORF. Each of the seven known capsid proteins has now been assigned to an ORF.


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