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Open AccessArticle

Genes for Membrane Transport Proteins: Not So Rare in Viruses

1
University Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Brandenburg Medical School, Immanuel Klinik Rüdersdorf, 15562 Rüdersdorf, Germany
2
Department of Biosciences, University of Milan, 20133 Milan, Italy
3
Department of Plant Pathology and Nebraska Center for Virology, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE 68583-0900, USA
4
Membrane Biophysics, Department of Biology, Technische Universität Darmstadt, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Viruses 2018, 10(9), 456; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10090456
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 22 August 2018 / Accepted: 24 August 2018 / Published: 26 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Algae Virus)
Some viruses have genes encoding proteins with membrane transport functions. It is unknown if these types of proteins are rare or are common in viruses. In particular, the evolutionary origin of some of the viral genes is obscure, where other viral proteins have homologs in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. We searched virus genomes in databases looking for transmembrane proteins with possible transport function. This effort led to the detection of 18 different types of putative membrane transport proteins indicating that they are not a rarity in viral genomes. The most abundant proteins are K+ channels. Their predicted structures vary between different viruses. With a few exceptions, the viral proteins differed significantly from homologs in their current hosts. In some cases the data provide evidence for a recent gene transfer between host and virus, but in other cases the evidence indicates a more complex evolutionary history. View Full-Text
Keywords: Phycodnaviridae; algae viruses; Mimiviridae; ion channels; transporter; ATPase; virus evolution Phycodnaviridae; algae viruses; Mimiviridae; ion channels; transporter; ATPase; virus evolution
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Greiner, T.; Moroni, A.; Van Etten, J.L.; Thiel, G. Genes for Membrane Transport Proteins: Not So Rare in Viruses. Viruses 2018, 10, 456.

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