1887

Abstract

The gene encoding the outer capsid protein, VP2, of African horsesickness virus serotype 3 (AHSV-3) has been sequenced in its entirety from cDNA clones of the segment 2 RNA, and compared with the previously published VP2 gene sequence of AHSV-4. AHSV-3 genome segment 2 was shown to be 3221 nucleotides in length, encoding a protein of 1057 amino acids with a 50·5 % identity to the amino acid sequence of AHSV-4 VP2. Two areas of high variability (approximately 35 % identity) were identified. The N-proximal variable region (amino acids 128 to 309) exhibited significant hydro-philicity, suggesting a possible role in the determination of the serotype-specific immune response. VP2 of AHSV-3 has furthermore been expressed in a baculo- virus expression system. The expressed protein was shown to react specifically with an anti-AHSV-3 serum in Western blots. Antibodies raised in rabbits and guinea-pigs against the recombinant VP2 neutralized the virus in a plaque reduction assay, confirming the identity of VP2 as the major neutralization-specific antigen of AHSV.

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1994-12-01
2021-10-24
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