Arch Virol (2005) 150: 1911–1919
Promoter activity in the 5
ﬂanking regions of the
Bohle iridovirus ICP 18, ICP 46 and major capsid protein genes
J. Pallister, S. Goldie, B. Coupar, and A. Hyatt
CSIRO Livestock Industries, Australian Animal Health Laboratory,
Geelong, Vic., Australia
Received December 1, 2004; accepted February 25, 2005
Published online April 21, 2005
Summary. Bohle iridovirus (BIV) belongs to the genus Ranavirus, of which Frog
virus 3 (FV-3) is the type species. We are developing BIV as a recombinant viral
delivery vector, and as a ﬁrst step we located speciﬁc BIV promoter sequences to
drive foreign gene expression in the recombinant virus. By comparison with FV-3
sequences, the genes encoding ICP 18 and ICP 46 in BIV were identiﬁed and
sequenced. Putative promoter regions of these two early genes and of the major
capsid protein (MCP) gene were identiﬁed, cloned into pSFM21, and luciferase
production was then used to assess the promoter activity of these regions.
The family Iridoviridae of large double stranded DNA viruses comprises four
genera: Ranavirus, Lymphocystisvirus, Iridovirus, and Chloriridovirus, members
of which have a host range that includes poikilothermic vertebrates and insects.
The host range of any one genus may be quite broad, for example the ranaviruses
infect ﬁsh, reptiles and amphibians . Two ranaviruses have been isolated
in Australia, Bohle iridovirus (BIV) isolated from the ornate burrowing frog
Lymnodynastes ornatus  and epizootic haemorrhagic necrosis virus (EHNV),
ﬁrst isolated from redﬁn perch in 1984 . A third ranavirus, Wamena iridovirus,
has been isolated from pythons that were illegally imported into Australia .
The type species of the genus is Frog virus 3 (FV-3), a North American ranavirus
isolated from the leopard frog, Rana pipiens .
Note: Nucleotide sequence data reported is available in the GenBank databases under the
accession numbers AY833648, AY833649 and AY833650.