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Open AccessArticle

A Functional K+ Channel from Tetraselmis Virus 1, a Member of the Mimiviridae

1
Membrane Biophysics, Department of Biology, Technische Universität Darmstadt, 64287 Darmstadt, Germany
2
Department of Oceanography, Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, 1950 East-West Road, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
3
Department of Biosciences and CNR IBF-Mi, Università degli Studi di Milano, Via Giovanni Celoria 26, 20133 Milano, Italy
4
University Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Brandenburg Medical School, Immanuel Klinik Rüdersdorf, Seebad 82/83, 15562 Rüdersdorf, Germany
5
Department of Plant Pathology and Nebraska Center for Virology, University of Nebraska Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68583-0900, USA
6
Institute of Biophysics, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Via Celoria 26, 20133 Milan, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Viruses 2020, 12(10), 1107; https://doi.org/10.3390/v12101107
Received: 7 September 2020 / Revised: 25 September 2020 / Accepted: 25 September 2020 / Published: 29 September 2020
(This article belongs to the Collection Unconventional Viruses)
Potassium ion (K+) channels have been observed in diverse viruses that infect eukaryotic marine and freshwater algae. However, experimental evidence for functional K+ channels among these alga-infecting viruses has thus far been restricted to members of the family Phycodnaviridae, which are large, double-stranded DNA viruses within the phylum Nucleocytoviricota. Recent sequencing projects revealed that alga-infecting members of Mimiviridae, another family within this phylum, may also contain genes encoding K+ channels. Here we examine the structural features and the functional properties of putative K+ channels from four cultivated members of Mimiviridae. While all four proteins contain variations of the conserved selectivity filter sequence of K+ channels, structural prediction algorithms suggest that only two of them have the required number and position of two transmembrane domains that are present in all K+ channels. After in vitro translation and reconstitution of the four proteins in planar lipid bilayers, we confirmed that one of them, a 79 amino acid protein from the virus Tetraselmis virus 1 (TetV-1), forms a functional ion channel with a distinct selectivity for K+ over Na+ and a sensitivity to Ba2+. Thus, virus-encoded K+ channels are not limited to Phycodnaviridae but also occur in the members of Mimiviridae. The large sequence diversity among the viral K+ channels implies multiple events of lateral gene transfer. View Full-Text
Keywords: viral K+ channel; Kcv; K+ channel evolution; Phycodnaviridae; Mimiviridae viral K+ channel; Kcv; K+ channel evolution; Phycodnaviridae; Mimiviridae
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kukovetz, K.; Hertel, B.; Schvarcz, C.R.; Saponaro, A.; Manthey, M.; Burk, U.; Greiner, T.; Steward, G.F.; Van Etten, J.L.; Moroni, A.; Thiel, G.; Rauh, O. A Functional K+ Channel from Tetraselmis Virus 1, a Member of the Mimiviridae. Viruses 2020, 12, 1107.

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