[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Classical swine fever virus (CSFV) harbors three envelope glycoproteins (E(rns), E1 and E2). Previous studies have demonstrated that removal of specific glycosylation sites within these proteins yielded attenuated and immunogenic CSFV mutants. Here we analyzed the effects of lack of glycosylation of baculovirus-expressed E(rns), E1, and E2 proteins on immunogenicity. Interestingly, E(rns), E1, and E2 proteins lacking proper post-translational modifications, most noticeable lack of glycosylation, failed to induce a detectable virus neutralizing antibody (NA) response and protection against CSFV. Similarly, no NA or protection was observed in pigs immunized with E1 glycoprotein. Analysis of E(rns) and E2 proteins with single site glycosylation mutations revealed that detectable antibody responses, but not protection against lethal CSFV challenge is affected by removal of specific glycosylation sites. In addition, it was observed that single administration of purified E(rns) glycoprotein induced an effective protection against CSFV infection.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: E1, along with E(rns) and E2, is one of the three envelope glycoproteins of classical swine fever virus (CSFV). E1 and E2 are anchored to the virus envelope at their carboxyl termini, and E(rns) loosely associates with the viral envelope. In infected cells, E2 forms homodimers and heterodimers with E1 mediated by disulfide bridges between cysteine residues. The E1 protein of CSFV strain Brescia contains six cysteine residues at positions 5, 20, 24, 94, 123, and 171. The role of these residues in the formation of E1-E2 heterodimers and their effect on CSFV viability in vitro and in vivo remain unclear. Here we observed that recombinant viruses harboring individual cysteine-to-serine substitutions within the E1 envelope protein still have formation of E1-E2 heterodimers which are functional in terms of allowing efficient virus progeny yields in infected primary swine cells. Additionally, these single cysteine mutant viruses were virulent in infected swine. However, a double mutant harboring Cys24Ser and Cys94Ser substitutions within the E1 protein altered formation of E1-E2 heterodimers in infected cells. This recombinant virus, E1ΔCys24/94v, showed delayed growth kinetics in primary swine macrophage cultures and was attenuated in swine. Furthermore, despite the observed diminished growth in vitro, infection with E1ΔCys24/94v protected swine from challenge with virulent CSFV strain Brescia at 3 and 28 days postinfection.
Journal of Virology 07/2011; 85(14):7264-72. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Classical swine fever (CSF) is a highly contagious and often fatal disease of swine caused by CSF virus (CSFV), a positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus within the Pestivirus genus of the Flaviviridae family. Here, we have identified conserved sequence elements observed in nucleotide-binding motifs (NBM) that hydrolyze NTPs within the CSFV non-structural (NS) protein NS4B. Expressed NS4B protein hydrolyzes both ATP and GTP. Substitutions of critical residues within the identified NS4B NBM Walker A and B motifs significantly impair the ATPase and GTPase activities of expressed proteins. Similar mutations introduced into the genetic backbone of a full-length cDNA copy of CSFV strain Brescia rendered no infectious viruses or viruses with impaired replication capabilities, suggesting that this NTPase activity is critical for the CSFV cycle. Recovered mutant viruses retained a virulent phenotype, as parental strain Brescia, in infected swine. These results have important implications for developing novel antiviral strategies against CSFV infection.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: According to our previous study of the M genes of H9N2 avian influenza viruses (AIV) in infected chickens, A/Quail/Hong Kong/G1/97 (G1 97)-like M genes newly emerged in northern and eastern China in addition to the existing A/chicken/Hong Kong/Y280/97 (Y280)-like lineage M genes. To systematically track the genesis and evolution of H9N2 viruses in this region, whole genome sequences of seventeen H9N2 isolates were obtained and their phylogenetic properties were determined. Phylogenetic analysis revealed several newly emerged lineages of gene segments in addition to the Y280-like and A/chicken/Shanghai/F/98(F 98)-like lineages, which are prevailing in northern and eastern China according to previous reports. Reassortments among these gene segments generated five novel genotypes of H9N2 viruses that have not been reported before in China. The emerging genotypes of H9N2 viruses in this region indicate that H9N2 virus genes undergo active evolution, particularly their internal genes, which raises concern for their likely contribution to gene reassortment and production of AIVs with new properties. Our study provides valuable insight into the prevalence of H9N2 viruses in northern and eastern China and demonstrates the need of long-term monitoring of the evolution of H9N2 AIV.
Virus Research 03/2010; 151(1):26-32. · 2.75 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: E1, along with E(rns) and E2 is one of the three envelope glycoproteins of Classical Swine Fever Virus (CSFV). Previously we showed that glycosylation status of virulent CSFV strain Brescia E2 or E(rns) affects virus virulence. Here, the three putative glycosylation sites of E1 were serially removed by means of site directed mutagenesis of a CSFV Brescia infectious clone (BICv) and their effect on virulence assessed in swine. Removal of all three putative glycosylation sites in E1, at CSFV positions N500, N513 and N594, yielded nonviable progeny, while single or dual site mutants excluding N594 were viable. Individual N594A (E1.N3 virus) or combined N500A/N513A (E1.N1N2 virus) substitutions resulted in BICv attenuation. Furthermore infection with E1.N3 or E1.N1N2 viruses efficiently protected swine from challenge with virulent BICv at 3 and 28 days post-infection. As previously observed with E(rns) and E2 and here with E1 data suggest that modification of glycosylation patterns could be used for developing CSFV live-attenuated vaccines.