The genomic position and nucleotide sequence of the immediate early gene ie1 of Spodoptera exigua multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (SeMNPV) were determined. The SeMNPV ie1 gene had the potential to encode a protein of 714 amino acids with a predicted molecular mass of 82.0 kDa, representing the largest baculovirus IE1 known to date. The similarity of SeMNPV IE1 with IE1 proteins from other baculoviruses was restricted to the basic C-terminal two-thirds of the protein, which is involved in DNA binding. A single ie1 transcript of 2.5 kb was detected at 1 h p.i., peaking at 8 h p.i. and disappearing at 24 h p.i. From 8 h p.i. onwards a 1.7 kb transcript was detected, which became more abundant late in infection. Primer extension analysis revealed the use of several start sites early and late in infection. One of these was located in the promoter motif CAGT located at position −15 relative to the translational start codon, most intensively used at 8 h p.i. Four kb upstream of the SeMNPV ie1 gene, ORF xd244 was identified with homology to the used left ie0 exon of AcMNPV, OpMNPV and LdMNPV. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that the SeMNPV IE1 protein shared the most recent ancestor with its HzSNPV and LdMNPV homologues, although their IE1 proteins had diverged considerably from each other and from other baculoviruses.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 1, 2000
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