Three rotavirus variants with a rearranged RNA segment derived from the NSP3 gene were isolated in three independent experiments of coinfection and multiple passages of simian rotavirus strain SA11 and single-VP7-gene- or NSP1-gene-substitution reassortants having genetic background of SA11. Sequence analysis indicated that the three rearranged NSP3 genes had almost identical sequences and genomic structures organized by partial duplication of the open reading frame in a head-to-tail orientation following the termination codon. The junction site of the original NSP3 gene (first copy) and the duplicated portion (second copy) was identical among the three rearranged genes, while a direct repeat, i.e., a homologous sequence between the first copy and second template for duplication, typically located at the junction site, was not detected. However, short similar sequences were present at the end of the first copy and beginning of the second copy. These findings suggest that rearrangement of the NSP3 gene may occur at a certain preferential site which is related to sequence similarity between 3′-untranslated region and a region near the 5′-end of ORF.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 1, 2008
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