1887

Abstract

The three-dimensional structure of RNA-dependent RNA polymerases (RdRps) is highly conserved among RNA viruses. In a previous study, a unique set of mutant strains of was obtained, encompassing either a genomic deletion of six codons or duplications of between 1 and 45 codons; these mutations affect different parts of the palm region, the most conserved part of RdRps containing the catalytic centre. In the present study, a detailed characterization of the RdRp mutant viruses was performed, demonstrating different degrees of a small-plaque phenotype in cell culture, correlating with significantly reduced viral RNA synthesis and delayed virus replication. Taken together, the results of this study demonstrate a surprising flexibility within the palm region of a plus-strand RNA virus RdRp, resulting in viral attenuation . This interesting insight into an essential viral protein may have implications for the development of vaccines and attenuated viral vectors.

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2006-12-01
2021-03-08
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