Duck enteritis virus (DEV) is classified to the family Herpesviridae, but has not been grouped into any genus so far. Four overlapped fragments were amplified from the DEV genome with polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The assembled length of the four fragments was 6202 bp, which contained the genes encoding unique long (UL) 24, thymidine kinase (TK) and glycoprotein H (gH) proteins. The UL24 overlapped with TK by 64 nucleotides (nt), in a head-to-head transcription orientation, and the TK and gH had the same transcription orientation. The comparison of amino acid sequences of these 3 deduced DEV proteins with other 12 alphaherpesviruses displayed 5 highly conserved sites in the UL24, as well as another 5 consensus regions in the TK and 4 consensus regions in the gH. The RNA polymerase II transcriptional control elements were identified in all the UL24, TK and gH of DEV. These elements included core promoters, TATA motifs and polyadenylation sites. Phylogenetic analysis for the genetic classification of DEV in the Alphaherpesvirinae subfamily with other 12 alphaherpesviruses was computed. The result showed that DEV was more closely related to avian herpesviruses, except infectious laryngotracheitis virus (ILTV), than to other alphaherpesviruses. Conclusively, according to the phylogenesis-based analysis and the homology comparison of functional domains of UL24, TK and gH, DEV should be classified to a separate genus of the Alphaherpesvirinae subfamily in the family Herpesviridae.
Virus Genes – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 28, 2005
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