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Viruses, Volume 9, Issue 3 (March 2017)

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Research

Jump to: Review, Other

Open AccessArticle A New Strategy to Reduce Influenza Escape: Detecting Therapeutic Targets Constituted of Invariance Groups
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 38; doi:10.3390/v9030038
Received: 15 September 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 23 February 2017 / Published: 2 March 2017
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Abstract
The pathogenicity of the different flu species is a real public health problem worldwide. To combat this scourge, we established a method to detect drug targets, reducing the possibility of escape. Besides being able to attach a drug candidate, these targets should have
[...] Read more.
The pathogenicity of the different flu species is a real public health problem worldwide. To combat this scourge, we established a method to detect drug targets, reducing the possibility of escape. Besides being able to attach a drug candidate, these targets should have the main characteristic of being part of an essential viral function. The invariance groups that are sets of residues bearing an essential function can be detected genetically. They consist of invariant and synthetic lethal residues (interdependent residues not varying or slightly varying when together). We analyzed an alignment of more than 10,000 hemagglutinin sequences of influenza to detect six invariance groups, close in space, and on the protein surface. In parallel we identified five potential pockets on the surface of hemagglutinin. By combining these results, three potential binding sites were determined that are composed of invariance groups located respectively in the vestigial esterase domain, in the bottom of the stem and in the fusion area. The latter target is constituted of residues involved in the spring-loaded mechanism, an essential step in the fusion process. We propose a model describing how this potential target could block the reorganization of the hemagglutinin HA2 secondary structure and prevent viral entry into the host cell. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
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Open AccessArticle Virus Resistance Is Not Costly in a Marine Alga Evolving under Multiple Environmental Stressors
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 39; doi:10.3390/v9030039
Received: 25 January 2017 / Revised: 24 February 2017 / Accepted: 28 February 2017 / Published: 8 March 2017
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Abstract
Viruses are important evolutionary drivers of host ecology and evolution. The marine picoplankton Ostreococcus tauri has three known resistance types that arise in response to infection with the Phycodnavirus OtV5: susceptible cells (S) that lyse following viral entry and replication; resistant cells (R)
[...] Read more.
Viruses are important evolutionary drivers of host ecology and evolution. The marine picoplankton Ostreococcus tauri has three known resistance types that arise in response to infection with the Phycodnavirus OtV5: susceptible cells (S) that lyse following viral entry and replication; resistant cells (R) that are refractory to viral entry; and resistant producers (RP) that do not all lyse but maintain some viruses within the population. To test for evolutionary costs of maintaining antiviral resistance, we examined whether O. tauri populations composed of each resistance type differed in their evolutionary responses to several environmental drivers (lower light, lower salt, lower phosphate and a changing environment) in the absence of viruses for approximately 200 generations. We did not detect a cost of resistance as measured by life-history traits (population growth rate, cell size and cell chlorophyll content) and competitive ability. Specifically, all R and RP populations remained resistant to OtV5 lysis for the entire 200-generation experiment, whereas lysis occurred in all S populations, suggesting that resistance is not costly to maintain even when direct selection for resistance was removed, or that there could be a genetic constraint preventing return to a susceptible resistance type. Following evolution, all S population densities dropped when inoculated with OtV5, but not to zero, indicating that lysis was incomplete, and that some cells may have gained a resistance mutation over the evolution experiment. These findings suggest that maintaining resistance in the absence of viruses was not costly. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Isolation and Characterization of a Double Stranded DNA Megavirus Infecting the Toxin-Producing Haptophyte Prymnesium parvum
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 40; doi:10.3390/v9030040
Received: 29 January 2017 / Revised: 22 February 2017 / Accepted: 27 February 2017 / Published: 9 March 2017
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Abstract
Prymnesium parvum is a toxin-producing haptophyte that causes harmful algal blooms globally, leading to large-scale fish kills that have severe ecological and economic implications. For the model haptophyte, Emiliania huxleyi, it has been shown that large dsDNA viruses play an important role
[...] Read more.
Prymnesium parvum is a toxin-producing haptophyte that causes harmful algal blooms globally, leading to large-scale fish kills that have severe ecological and economic implications. For the model haptophyte, Emiliania huxleyi, it has been shown that large dsDNA viruses play an important role in regulating blooms and therefore biogeochemical cycling, but much less work has been done looking at viruses that infect P. parvum, or the role that these viruses may play in regulating harmful algal blooms. In this study, we report the isolation and characterization of a lytic nucleo-cytoplasmic large DNA virus (NCLDV) collected from the site of a harmful P. parvum bloom. In subsequent experiments, this virus was shown to infect cultures of Prymnesium sp. and showed phylogenetic similarity to the extended Megaviridae family of algal viruses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Change in Emiliania huxleyi Virus Assemblage Diversity but Not in Host Genetic Composition during an Ocean Acidification Mesocosm Experiment
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 41; doi:10.3390/v9030041
Received: 12 January 2017 / Revised: 23 February 2017 / Accepted: 2 March 2017 / Published: 8 March 2017
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Abstract
Effects of elevated pCO2 on Emiliania huxleyi genetic diversity and the viruses that infect E. huxleyi (EhVs) have been investigated in large volume enclosures in a Norwegian fjord. Triplicate enclosures were bubbled with air enriched with CO2 to 760 ppmv
[...] Read more.
Effects of elevated pCO2 on Emiliania huxleyi genetic diversity and the viruses that infect E. huxleyi (EhVs) have been investigated in large volume enclosures in a Norwegian fjord. Triplicate enclosures were bubbled with air enriched with CO2 to 760 ppmv whilst the other three enclosures were bubbled with air at ambient pCO2; phytoplankton growth was initiated by the addition of nitrate and phosphate. E. huxleyi was the dominant coccolithophore in all enclosures, but no difference in genetic diversity, based on DGGE analysis using primers specific to the calcium binding protein gene (gpa) were detected in any of the treatments. Chlorophyll concentrations and primary production were lower in the three elevated pCO2 treatments than in the ambient treatments. However, although coccolithophores numbers were reduced in two of the high-pCO2 treatments; in the third, there was no suppression of coccolithophores numbers, which were very similar to the three ambient treatments. In contrast, there was considerable variation in genetic diversity in the EhVs, as determined by analysis of the major capsid protein (mcp) gene. EhV diversity was much lower in the high-pCO2 treatment enclosure that did not show inhibition of E. huxleyi growth. Since virus infection is generally implicated as a major factor in terminating phytoplankton blooms, it is suggested that no study of the effect of ocean acidification in phytoplankton can be complete if it does not include an assessment of viruses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Phage Biodiversity in Artisanal Cheese Wheys Reflects the Complexity of the Fermentation Process
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 45; doi:10.3390/v9030045
Received: 3 February 2017 / Revised: 8 March 2017 / Accepted: 13 March 2017 / Published: 16 March 2017
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Abstract
Dairy fermentations constitute a perfect “breeding ground” for bacteriophages infecting starter cultures, particularly strains of Lactococcus lactis. In modern fermentations, these phages typically belong to one of three groups, i.e., the 936, P335, and c2 phage groups. Traditional production methods present fewer chemical
[...] Read more.
Dairy fermentations constitute a perfect “breeding ground” for bacteriophages infecting starter cultures, particularly strains of Lactococcus lactis. In modern fermentations, these phages typically belong to one of three groups, i.e., the 936, P335, and c2 phage groups. Traditional production methods present fewer chemical and physical barriers to phage proliferation compared to modern production systems, while the starter cultures used are typically complex, variable, and undefined. In the current study, a variety of cheese whey, animal-derived rennet, and vat swab samples from artisanal cheeses produced in Sicily were analysed for the presence of lactococcal phages to assess phage diversity in such environments. The complete genomes of 18 representative phage isolates were sequenced, allowing the identification of 10 lactococcal 949 group phages, six P087 group phages, and two members of the 936 group phages. The genetic diversity of these isolates was examined using phylogenetic analysis as well as a focused analysis of the receptor binding proteins, which dictate specific interactions with the host-encoded receptor. Thermal treatments at 63 °C and 83 °C indicate that the 949 phages are particularly sensitive to thermal treatments, followed by the P087 and 936 isolates, which were shown to be much less sensitive to such treatments. This difference may explain the relatively low frequency of isolation of the so-called “rare” 949 and P087 group phages in modern fermentations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viruses of Microbes)
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Open AccessArticle A Pelagic Microbiome (Viruses to Protists) from a Small Cup of Seawater
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 47; doi:10.3390/v9030047
Received: 13 January 2017 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 13 March 2017 / Published: 17 March 2017
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Abstract
The aquatic microbiome is composed of a multi-phylotype community of microbes, ranging from the numerically dominant viruses to the phylogenetically diverse unicellular phytoplankton. They influence key biogeochemical processes and form the base of marine food webs, becoming food for secondary consumers. Due to
[...] Read more.
The aquatic microbiome is composed of a multi-phylotype community of microbes, ranging from the numerically dominant viruses to the phylogenetically diverse unicellular phytoplankton. They influence key biogeochemical processes and form the base of marine food webs, becoming food for secondary consumers. Due to recent advances in next-generation sequencing, this previously overlooked component of our hydrosphere is starting to reveal its true diversity and biological complexity. We report here that 250 mL of seawater is sufficient to provide a comprehensive description of the microbial diversity in an oceanic environment. We found that there was a dominance of the order Caudovirales (59%), with the family Myoviridae being the most prevalent. The families Phycodnaviridae and Mimiviridae made up the remainder of pelagic double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) virome. Consistent with this analysis, the Cyanobacteria dominate (52%) the prokaryotic diversity. While the dinoflagellates and their endosymbionts, the superphylum Alveolata dominates (92%) the microbial eukaryotic diversity. A total of 834 prokaryotic, 346 eukaryotic and 254 unique virus phylotypes were recorded in this relatively small sample of water. We also provide evidence, through a metagenomic-barcoding comparative analysis, that viruses are the likely source of microbial environmental DNA (meDNA). This study opens the door to a more integrated approach to oceanographic sampling and data analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Viral Protein Kinetics of Piscine Orthoreovirus Infection in Atlantic Salmon Blood Cells
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 49; doi:10.3390/v9030049
Received: 15 December 2016 / Revised: 7 March 2017 / Accepted: 10 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
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Abstract
Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) is ubiquitous in farmed Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and the cause of heart and skeletal muscle inflammation. Erythrocytes are important target cells for PRV. We have investigated the kinetics of PRV infection in salmon blood cells. The findings
[...] Read more.
Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) is ubiquitous in farmed Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and the cause of heart and skeletal muscle inflammation. Erythrocytes are important target cells for PRV. We have investigated the kinetics of PRV infection in salmon blood cells. The findings indicate that PRV causes an acute infection of blood cells lasting 1–2 weeks, before it subsides into persistence. A high production of viral proteins occurred initially in the acute phase which significantly correlated with antiviral gene transcription. Globular viral factories organized by the non-structural protein µNS were also observed initially, but were not evident at later stages. Interactions between µNS and the PRV structural proteins λ1, µ1, σ1 and σ3 were demonstrated. Different size variants of µNS and the outer capsid protein µ1 appeared at specific time points during infection. Maximal viral protein load was observed five weeks post cohabitant challenge and was undetectable from seven weeks post challenge. In contrast, viral RNA at a high level could be detected throughout the eight-week trial. A proteolytic cleavage fragment of the µ1 protein was the only viral protein detectable after seven weeks post challenge, indicating that this µ1 fragment may be involved in the mechanisms of persistent infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Schrödinger’s Cheshire Cat: Are Haploid Emiliania huxleyi Cells Resistant to Viral Infection or Not?
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 51; doi:10.3390/v9030051
Received: 31 January 2017 / Revised: 10 March 2017 / Accepted: 14 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
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Abstract
Emiliania huxleyi is the main calcite producer on Earth and is routinely infected by a virus (EhV); a double stranded DNA (dsDNA) virus belonging to the family Phycodnaviridae. E. huxleyi exhibits a haplodiploid life cycle; the calcified diploid stage is non-motile and
[...] Read more.
Emiliania huxleyi is the main calcite producer on Earth and is routinely infected by a virus (EhV); a double stranded DNA (dsDNA) virus belonging to the family Phycodnaviridae. E. huxleyi exhibits a haplodiploid life cycle; the calcified diploid stage is non-motile and forms extensive blooms. The haploid phase is a non-calcified biflagellated cell bearing organic scales. Haploid cells are thought to resist infection, through a process deemed the “Cheshire Cat” escape strategy; however, a recent study detected the presence of viral lipids in the same haploid strain. Here we report on the application of an E. huxleyi CCMP1516 EhV-86 combined tiling array (TA) that further confirms an EhV infection in the RCC1217 haploid strain, which grew without any signs of cell lysis. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and PCR verified the presence of viral RNA in the haploid cells, yet indicated an absence of viral DNA, respectively. These infected cells are an alternative stage of the virus life cycle deemed the haplococcolithovirocell. In this instance, the host is both resistant to and infected by EhV, i.e., the viral transcriptome is present in haploid cells whilst there is no evidence of viral lysis. This superimposed state is reminiscent of Schrödinger’s cat; of being simultaneously both dead and alive. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Coccolithoviruses: A Review of Cross-Kingdom Genomic Thievery and Metabolic Thuggery
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 52; doi:10.3390/v9030052
Received: 18 January 2017 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 14 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
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Abstract
Coccolithoviruses (Phycodnaviridae) infect and lyse the most ubiquitous and successful coccolithophorid in modern oceans, Emiliania huxleyi. So far, the genomes of 13 of these giant lytic viruses (i.e., Emiliania huxleyi viruses—EhVs) have been sequenced, assembled, and annotated. Here, we performed
[...] Read more.
Coccolithoviruses (Phycodnaviridae) infect and lyse the most ubiquitous and successful coccolithophorid in modern oceans, Emiliania huxleyi. So far, the genomes of 13 of these giant lytic viruses (i.e., Emiliania huxleyi viruses—EhVs) have been sequenced, assembled, and annotated. Here, we performed an in-depth comparison of their genomes to try and contextualize the ecological and evolutionary traits of these viruses. The genomes of these EhVs have from 444 to 548 coding sequences (CDSs). Presence/absence analysis of CDSs identified putative genes with particular ecological significance, namely sialidase, phosphate permease, and sphingolipid biosynthesis. The viruses clustered into distinct clades, based on their DNA polymerase gene as well as full genome comparisons. We discuss the use of such clustering and suggest that a gene-by-gene investigation approach may be more useful when the goal is to reveal differences related to functionally important genes. A multi domain “Best BLAST hit” analysis revealed that 84% of the EhV genes have closer similarities to the domain Eukarya. However, 16% of the EhV CDSs were very similar to bacterial genes, contributing to the idea that a significant portion of the gene flow in the planktonic world inter-crosses the domains of life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus Induces Autophagy to Benefit Its Replication
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 53; doi:10.3390/v9030053
Received: 28 December 2016 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 15 March 2017 / Published: 19 March 2017
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Abstract
The new porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) has caused devastating economic losses to the swine industry worldwide. Despite extensive research on the relationship between autophagy and virus infection, the concrete role of autophagy in porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) infection has not been reported.
[...] Read more.
The new porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) has caused devastating economic losses to the swine industry worldwide. Despite extensive research on the relationship between autophagy and virus infection, the concrete role of autophagy in porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) infection has not been reported. In this study, autophagy was demonstrated to be triggered by the effective replication of PEDV through transmission electron microscopy, confocal microscopy, and Western blot analysis. Moreover, autophagy was confirmed to benefit PEDV replication by using autophagy regulators and RNA interference. Furthermore, autophagy might be associated with the expression of inflammatory cytokines and have a positive feedback loop with the NF-κB signaling pathway during PEDV infection. This work is the first attempt to explore the complex interplay between autophagy and PEDV infection. Our findings might accelerate our understanding of the pathogenesis of PEDV infection and provide new insights into the development of effective therapeutic strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porcine Viruses) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle Virological Surveillance of Influenza A Subtypes Isolated in 2014 from Clinical Outbreaks in Canadian Swine
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 55; doi:10.3390/v9030055
Received: 17 November 2016 / Revised: 10 March 2017 / Accepted: 12 March 2017 / Published: 21 March 2017
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Abstract
Influenza A viruses (IAVs) are respiratory pathogens associated with an acute respiratory disease that occurs year-round in swine production. It is currently one of the most important pathogens in swine populations, with the potential to infect other host species including humans. Ongoing research
[...] Read more.
Influenza A viruses (IAVs) are respiratory pathogens associated with an acute respiratory disease that occurs year-round in swine production. It is currently one of the most important pathogens in swine populations, with the potential to infect other host species including humans. Ongoing research indicates that the three major subtypes of IAV—H1N1, H1N2, and H3N2—continue to expand in their genetic and antigenic diversity. In this study, we conducted a comprehensive genomic analysis of 16 IAVs isolated from different clinical outbreaks in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, and Saskatchewan in 2014. We also examined the genetic basis for probable antigenic differences among sequenced viruses. On the basis of phylogenetic analysis, all 13 Canadian H3N2 viruses belonged to cluster IV, eight H3N2 viruses were part of the IV-C cluster, and one virus belonged to the IV-B and one to the IV-D cluster. Based on standards used in this study, three H3N2 viruses could not be clearly classified into any currently established group within cluster IV (A to F). Three H1N2 viruses were part of the H1α cluster. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessArticle Isolation and Characterization of a Shewanella Phage–Host System from the Gut of the Tunicate, Ciona intestinalis
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 60; doi:10.3390/v9030060
Received: 29 January 2017 / Revised: 8 March 2017 / Accepted: 17 March 2017 / Published: 22 March 2017
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Abstract
Outnumbering all other biological entities on earth, bacteriophages (phages) play critical roles in structuring microbial communities through bacterial infection and subsequent lysis, as well as through horizontal gene transfer. While numerous studies have examined the effects of phages on free-living bacterial cells, much
[...] Read more.
Outnumbering all other biological entities on earth, bacteriophages (phages) play critical roles in structuring microbial communities through bacterial infection and subsequent lysis, as well as through horizontal gene transfer. While numerous studies have examined the effects of phages on free-living bacterial cells, much less is known regarding the role of phage infection in host-associated biofilms, which help to stabilize adherent microbial communities. Here we report the cultivation and characterization of a novel strain of Shewanella fidelis from the gut of the marine tunicate Ciona intestinalis, inducible prophages from the S. fidelis genome, and a strain-specific lytic phage recovered from surrounding seawater. In vitro biofilm assays demonstrated that lytic phage infection affects biofilm formation in a process likely influenced by the accumulation and integration of the extracellular DNA released during cell lysis, similar to the mechanism that has been previously shown for prophage induction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessArticle Emerging Interaction Patterns in the Emiliania huxleyi-EhV System
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 61; doi:10.3390/v9030061
Received: 30 January 2017 / Revised: 15 March 2017 / Accepted: 16 March 2017 / Published: 22 March 2017
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Abstract
Viruses are thought to be fundamental in driving microbial diversity in the oceanic planktonic realm. That role and associated emerging infection patterns remain particularly elusive for eukaryotic phytoplankton and their viruses. Here we used a vast number of strains from the model system
[...] Read more.
Viruses are thought to be fundamental in driving microbial diversity in the oceanic planktonic realm. That role and associated emerging infection patterns remain particularly elusive for eukaryotic phytoplankton and their viruses. Here we used a vast number of strains from the model system Emiliania huxleyi/Emiliania huxleyi Virus to quantify parameters such as growth rate (µ), resistance (R), and viral production (Vp) capacities. Algal and viral abundances were monitored by flow cytometry during 72-h incubation experiments. The results pointed out higher viral production capacity in generalist EhV strains, and the virus-host infection network showed a strong co-evolution pattern between E. huxleyi and EhV populations. The existence of a trade-off between resistance and growth capacities was not confirmed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Non-Canonical Roles of Dengue Virus Non-Structural Proteins
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 42; doi:10.3390/v9030042
Received: 16 December 2016 / Revised: 6 March 2017 / Accepted: 8 March 2017 / Published: 13 March 2017
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Abstract
The Flaviviridae family comprises a number of human pathogens, which, although sharing structural and functional features, cause diseases with very different outcomes. This can be explained by the plurality of functions exerted by the few proteins coded by viral genomes, with some of
[...] Read more.
The Flaviviridae family comprises a number of human pathogens, which, although sharing structural and functional features, cause diseases with very different outcomes. This can be explained by the plurality of functions exerted by the few proteins coded by viral genomes, with some of these functions shared among members of a same family, but others being unique for each virus species. These non-canonical functions probably have evolved independently and may serve as the base to the development of specific therapies for each of those diseases. Here it is discussed what is currently known about the non-canonical roles of dengue virus (DENV) non-structural proteins (NSPs), which may account for some of the effects specifically observed in DENV infection, but not in other members of the Flaviviridae family. This review explores how DENV NSPs contributes to the physiopathology of dengue, evasion from host immunity, metabolic changes, and redistribution of cellular components during infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Flavivirus Research)
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Open AccessReview Marine Prasinoviruses and Their Tiny Plankton Hosts: A Review
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 43; doi:10.3390/v9030043
Received: 31 January 2017 / Revised: 4 March 2017 / Accepted: 8 March 2017 / Published: 15 March 2017
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Abstract
Viruses play a crucial role in the marine environment, promoting nutrient recycling and biogeochemical cycling and driving evolutionary processes. Tiny marine phytoplankton called prasinophytes are ubiquitous and significant contributors to global primary production and biomass. A number of viruses (known as prasinoviruses) that
[...] Read more.
Viruses play a crucial role in the marine environment, promoting nutrient recycling and biogeochemical cycling and driving evolutionary processes. Tiny marine phytoplankton called prasinophytes are ubiquitous and significant contributors to global primary production and biomass. A number of viruses (known as prasinoviruses) that infect these important primary producers have been isolated and characterised over the past decade. Here we review the current body of knowledge about prasinoviruses and their interactions with their algal hosts. Several genes, including those encoding for glycosyltransferases, methyltransferases and amino acid synthesis enzymes, which have never been identified in viruses of eukaryotes previously, have been detected in prasinovirus genomes. The host organisms are also intriguing; most recently, an immunity chromosome used by a prasinophyte in response to viral infection was discovered. In light of such recent, novel discoveries, we discuss why the cellular simplicity of prasinophytes makes for appealing model host organism–virus systems to facilitate focused and detailed investigations into the dynamics of marine viruses and their intimate associations with host species. We encourage the adoption of the prasinophyte Ostreococcus and its associated viruses as a model host–virus system for examination of cellular and molecular processes in the marine environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessReview Reverse Transcription in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Long-Terminal Repeat Retrotransposon Ty3
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 44; doi:10.3390/v9030044
Received: 2 February 2017 / Revised: 3 March 2017 / Accepted: 7 March 2017 / Published: 15 March 2017
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Abstract
Converting the single-stranded retroviral RNA into integration-competent double-stranded DNA is achieved through a multi-step process mediated by the virus-coded reverse transcriptase (RT). With the exception that it is restricted to an intracellular life cycle, replication of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae long terminal repeat (LTR)-retrotransposon
[...] Read more.
Converting the single-stranded retroviral RNA into integration-competent double-stranded DNA is achieved through a multi-step process mediated by the virus-coded reverse transcriptase (RT). With the exception that it is restricted to an intracellular life cycle, replication of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae long terminal repeat (LTR)-retrotransposon Ty3 genome is guided by equivalent events that, while generally similar, show many unique and subtle differences relative to the retroviral counterparts. Until only recently, our knowledge of RT structure and function was guided by a vast body of literature on the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) enzyme. Although the recently-solved structure of Ty3 RT in the presence of an RNA/DNA hybrid adds little in terms of novelty to the mechanistic basis underlying DNA polymerase and ribonuclease H activity, it highlights quite remarkable topological differences between retroviral and LTR-retrotransposon RTs. The theme of overall similarity but distinct differences extends to the priming mechanisms used by Ty3 RT to initiate (−) and (+) strand DNA synthesis. The unique structural organization of the retrotransposon enzyme and interaction with its nucleic acid substrates, with emphasis on polypurine tract (PPT)-primed initiation of (+) strand synthesis, is the subject of this review. Full article
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Open AccessReview A Student’s Guide to Giant Viruses Infecting Small Eukaryotes: From Acanthamoeba to Zooxanthellae
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 46; doi:10.3390/v9030046
Received: 27 December 2016 / Revised: 7 March 2017 / Accepted: 9 March 2017 / Published: 17 March 2017
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Abstract
The discovery of infectious particles that challenge conventional thoughts concerning “what is a virus” has led to the evolution a new field of study in the past decade. Here, we review knowledge and information concerning “giant viruses”, with a focus not only on
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The discovery of infectious particles that challenge conventional thoughts concerning “what is a virus” has led to the evolution a new field of study in the past decade. Here, we review knowledge and information concerning “giant viruses”, with a focus not only on some of the best studied systems, but also provide an effort to illuminate systems yet to be better resolved. We conclude by demonstrating that there is an abundance of new host–virus systems that fall into this “giant” category, demonstrating that this field of inquiry presents great opportunities for future research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Viruses 2016)
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Open AccessReview Porcine Rotaviruses: Epidemiology, Immune Responses and Control Strategies
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 48; doi:10.3390/v9030048
Received: 20 February 2017 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 13 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
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Abstract
Rotaviruses (RVs) are a major cause of acute viral gastroenteritis in young animals and children worldwide. Immunocompetent adults of different species become resistant to clinical disease due to post-infection immunity, immune system maturation and gut physiological changes. Of the 9 RV genogroups (A–I),
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Rotaviruses (RVs) are a major cause of acute viral gastroenteritis in young animals and children worldwide. Immunocompetent adults of different species become resistant to clinical disease due to post-infection immunity, immune system maturation and gut physiological changes. Of the 9 RV genogroups (A–I), RV A, B, and C (RVA, RVB, and RVC, respectively) are associated with diarrhea in piglets. Although discovered decades ago, porcine genogroup E RVs (RVE) are uncommon and their pathogenesis is not studied well. The presence of porcine RV H (RVH), a newly defined distinct genogroup, was recently confirmed in diarrheic pigs in Japan, Brazil, and the US. The complex epidemiology, pathogenicity and high genetic diversity of porcine RVAs are widely recognized and well-studied. More recent data show a significant genetic diversity based on the VP7 gene analysis of RVB and C strains in pigs. In this review, we will summarize previous and recent research to provide insights on historic and current prevalence and genetic diversity of porcine RVs in different geographic regions and production systems. We will also provide a brief overview of immune responses to porcine RVs, available control strategies and zoonotic potential of different RV genotypes. An improved understanding of the above parameters may lead to the development of more optimal strategies to manage RV diarrheal disease in swine and humans. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porcine Viruses) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessReview A Review of Phage Therapy against Bacterial Pathogens of Aquatic and Terrestrial Organisms
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 50; doi:10.3390/v9030050
Received: 27 January 2017 / Revised: 8 March 2017 / Accepted: 13 March 2017 / Published: 18 March 2017
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Abstract
Since the discovery of bacteriophage in the early 1900s, there have been numerous attempts to exploit their innate ability to kill bacteria. The purpose of this report is to review current findings and new developments in phage therapy with an emphasis on bacterial
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Since the discovery of bacteriophage in the early 1900s, there have been numerous attempts to exploit their innate ability to kill bacteria. The purpose of this report is to review current findings and new developments in phage therapy with an emphasis on bacterial diseases of marine organisms, humans, and plants. The body of evidence includes data from studies investigating bacteriophage in marine and land environments as modern antimicrobial agents against harmful bacteria. The goal of this paper is to present an overview of the topic of phage therapy, the use of phage-derived protein therapy, and the hosts that bacteriophage are currently being used against, with an emphasis on the uses of bacteriophage against marine, human, animal and plant pathogens. Full article
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Open AccessReview Complete and Incomplete Hepatitis B Virus Particles: Formation, Function, and Application
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 56; doi:10.3390/v9030056
Received: 8 February 2017 / Revised: 11 March 2017 / Accepted: 17 March 2017 / Published: 21 March 2017
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Abstract
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a para-retrovirus or retroid virus that contains a double-stranded DNA genome and replicates this DNA via reverse transcription of a RNA pregenome. Viral reverse transcription takes place within a capsid upon packaging of the RNA and the viral
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Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a para-retrovirus or retroid virus that contains a double-stranded DNA genome and replicates this DNA via reverse transcription of a RNA pregenome. Viral reverse transcription takes place within a capsid upon packaging of the RNA and the viral reverse transcriptase. A major characteristic of HBV replication is the selection of capsids containing the double-stranded DNA, but not those containing the RNA or the single-stranded DNA replication intermediate, for envelopment during virion secretion. The complete HBV virion particles thus contain an outer envelope, studded with viral envelope proteins, that encloses the capsid, which, in turn, encapsidates the double-stranded DNA genome. Furthermore, HBV morphogenesis is characterized by the release of subviral particles that are several orders of magnitude more abundant than the complete virions. One class of subviral particles are the classical surface antigen particles (Australian antigen) that contain only the viral envelope proteins, whereas the more recently discovered genome-free (empty) virions contain both the envelope and capsid but no genome. In addition, recent evidence suggests that low levels of RNA-containing particles may be released, after all. We will summarize what is currently known about how the complete and incomplete HBV particles are assembled. We will discuss briefly the functions of the subviral particles, which remain largely unknown. Finally, we will explore the utility of the subviral particles, particularly, the potential of empty virions and putative RNA virions as diagnostic markers and the potential of empty virons as a vaccine candidate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Hepatitis B Virus Research)
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Open AccessReview Cross-Regulation between Transposable Elements and Host DNA Replication
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 57; doi:10.3390/v9030057
Received: 1 February 2017 / Revised: 13 March 2017 / Accepted: 15 March 2017 / Published: 21 March 2017
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Abstract
Transposable elements subvert host cellular functions to ensure their survival. Their interaction with the host DNA replication machinery indicates that selective pressures lead them to develop ancestral and convergent evolutionary adaptations aimed at conserved features of this fundamental process. These interactions can shape
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Transposable elements subvert host cellular functions to ensure their survival. Their interaction with the host DNA replication machinery indicates that selective pressures lead them to develop ancestral and convergent evolutionary adaptations aimed at conserved features of this fundamental process. These interactions can shape the co-evolution of the transposons and their hosts. Full article
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Open AccessReview Virus-Bacteria Interactions: An Emerging Topic in Human Infection
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 58; doi:10.3390/v9030058
Received: 13 February 2017 / Revised: 15 March 2017 / Accepted: 17 March 2017 / Published: 21 March 2017
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Abstract
Bacteria and viruses often occupy the same niches, however, interest in their potential collaboration in promoting wellness or disease states has only recently gained traction. While the interaction of some bacteria and viruses is well characterized (e.g., influenza virus), researchers are typically more
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Bacteria and viruses often occupy the same niches, however, interest in their potential collaboration in promoting wellness or disease states has only recently gained traction. While the interaction of some bacteria and viruses is well characterized (e.g., influenza virus), researchers are typically more interested in the location of the infection than the manner of cooperation. There are two overarching types of bacterial-virus disease causing interactions: direct interactions that in some way aid the viruses, and indirect interactions aiding bacteria. The virus-promoting direct interactions occur when the virus exploits a bacterial component to facilitate penetration into the host cell. Conversely, indirect interactions result in increased bacterial pathogenesis as a consequence of viral infection. Enteric viruses mainly utilize the direct pathway, while respiratory viruses largely affect bacteria in an indirect fashion. This review focuses on some key examples of how virus-bacteria interactions impact the infection process across the two organ systems, and provides evidence supporting this as an emerging theme in infectious disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
Open AccessReview Myeloid C-Type Lectin Receptors in Viral Recognition and Antiviral Immunity
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 59; doi:10.3390/v9030059
Received: 18 November 2016 / Revised: 6 March 2017 / Accepted: 17 March 2017 / Published: 22 March 2017
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Abstract
Recognition of viral glycans by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) in innate immunity contributes to antiviral immune responses. C-type lectin receptors (CLRs) are PRRs capable of sensing glycans present in viral pathogens to activate antiviral immune responses such as phagocytosis, antigen processing and presentation,
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Recognition of viral glycans by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) in innate immunity contributes to antiviral immune responses. C-type lectin receptors (CLRs) are PRRs capable of sensing glycans present in viral pathogens to activate antiviral immune responses such as phagocytosis, antigen processing and presentation, and subsequent T cell activation. The ability of CLRs to elicit and shape adaptive immunity plays a critical role in the inhibition of viral spread within the host. However, certain viruses exploit CLRs for viral entry into host cells to avoid immune recognition. To block CLR interactions with viral glycoproteins, antiviral strategies may involve the use of multivalent glycan carrier systems. In this review, we describe the role of CLRs in antiviral immunity and we highlight their dual function in viral clearance and exploitation by viral pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Lectins as Antiviral)
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Open AccessMeeting Report 1st Workshop of the Canadian Society for Virology
Viruses 2017, 9(3), 54; doi:10.3390/v9030054
Received: 12 March 2017 / Revised: 12 March 2017 / Accepted: 15 March 2017 / Published: 20 March 2017
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Abstract
The 1st Workshop of the Canadian Society for Virology (CSV2016) was a Special Workshop of the 35th Annual Meeting for the American Society for Virology, held on 18 June 2016 on the beautiful Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia. The workshop provided a
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The 1st Workshop of the Canadian Society for Virology (CSV2016) was a Special Workshop of the 35th Annual Meeting for the American Society for Virology, held on 18 June 2016 on the beautiful Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia. The workshop provided a forum for discussion of recent advances in the field, in an informal setting conducive to interaction with colleagues. CSV2016 featured two internationally-renowned Canadian keynote speakers who discussed translational virology research; American Society for Virology President Grant McFadden (then from University of Florida, now relocated to Arizona State University) who presented his studies of oncolytic poxviruses, while Matthew Miller (McMaster University) reviewed the prospects for a universal influenza vaccine. The workshop also featured a variety of trainee oral and poster presentations, and a panel discussion on the topic of the future of the CSV and virus research in Canada. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Editorial)
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