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Open Access Research article

Complete sequence and organization of Antheraea pernyi nucleopolyhedrovirus, a dr-rich baculovirus

Zuo-Ming Nie1, Zhi-Fang Zhang2, Dan Wang1, Ping-An He1, Cai-Ying Jiang1, Li Song1, Fang Chen1, Jie Xu1, Ling Yang2, Lin-Lin Yu2, Jian Chen1, Zheng-Bing Lv1, Jing-Jing Lu1, Xiang-Fu Wu1 and Yao-Zhou Zhang1*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Biochemistry, Zhejiang Sci-Tech University, Hangzhou 310018, PR China

2 Biotechnology Research Institute, National Key facility for Crop Gene Resources and Genetic Improvement, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, PR China

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BMC Genomics 2007, 8:248  doi:10.1186/1471-2164-8-248

Published: 24 July 2007

Abstract

Background

The completion and reporting of baculovirus genomes is extremely important as it advances our understanding of gene function and evolution. Due to the large number of viral genomes now sequenced it is very important that authors present significantly detailed analyses to advance the understanding of the viral genomes. However, there is no report of the Antheraea pernyi nucleopolyhedrovirus (AnpeNPV) genome.

Results

The genome of AnpeNPV, which infects Chinese tussah silkworm (Antheraea pernyi), was sequenced and analyzed. The genome was 126,629 bp in size. The G+C content of the genome, 53.4%, was higher than that of most of the sequenced baculoviruses. 147 open reading frames (ORFs) that putatively encode proteins of 50 or more amino acid residues with minimal overlap were determined. Of the 147 ORFs, 143 appeared to be homologous to other baculovirus genes, and 4 were unique to AnpeNPV. Furthermore, there are still 29 and 33 conserved genes present in all baculoviruses and all lepidopteran baculoviruses respectively. In addition, the total number of genes common to all lepidopteran NPVs is sill 74, however the 74 genes are somewhat different from the 74 genes identified before because of some new sequenced NPVs. Only 6 genes were found exclusively in all lepidopteran NPVs and 12 genes were found exclusively in all Group I NPVs. AnpeNPV encodes v-trex(Anpe115, a 3' to 5' repair exonuclease), which was observed only in CfMNPV and CfDEFNPV in Group I NPVs. This gene potentially originated by horizontal gene transfer from an ancestral host. In addition, AnpeNPV encodes two conotoxin-like gene homologues (ctls), ctl1 and ctl2, which were observed only in HycuNPV, OpMNPV and LdMNPV. Unlike other baculoviruses, only 3 typical homologous regions (hrs) were identified containing 2~9 repeats of a 30 bp-long palindromic core. However, 24 perfect or imperfect direct repeats (drs) with a high degree of AT content were found within the intergenic spacer regions that may function as non-hr, ori-like regions found in GrleGV, CpGV and AdorGV. 9 drs were also found in intragenic spacer regions of AnpeNPV.

Conclusion

AnpeNPV belongs to Group I NPVs and is most similar to HycuNPV, EppoNPV, OpMNPV and CfMNPV based on gene content, genome arrangement, and amino acid identity. In addition, analysis of genes that flank hrs supported the argument that these regions are involved in the transfer of sequences between the virus and host.