Fowlpox virus (FPV) insertion plasmids were constructed that, upon integration into the viral genome via in-vivo recombination, inactivate the viral thymidine kinase ( tk ) gene. Using this approach, no wild-type virus-free stocks of recombinant virus could be obtained. In contrast, either integration of foreign genes into the intergenic region of the intact FPV tk gene and the open reading frame located downstream, or the functional substitution of the inactivated FPV tk gene by an intact vaccinia virus tk gene resulted in the predicted stable recombinants that were free of wild-type virus. Our results suggest that in already highly attenuated poxvirus strains an intact tk gene is essential for efficient growth of the virus in cell culture.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 1, 1997
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