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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Essential role of the NV protein of Novirhabdovirus for pathogenicity in rainbow trout.

Novirhabdovirus, infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV), and viral hemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV) are fish rhabdoviruses that, in comparison to the other rhabdoviruses, contain an additional gene coding for a small nonvirion (NV) protein of unassigned function. A recombinant IHNV with the NV gene deleted but expressing the green fluorescent protein (rIHNV-Delta NV) has previously been shown to be efficiently recovered by reverse genetics (S. Biacchesi et al., J. Virol. 74:11247-11253, 2000). However, preliminary experiments suggested that the growth in cell culture of rIHNV-Delta NV was affected by the NV deletion. In the present study, we show that the growth in cell culture of rIHNV-Delta NV is indeed severely impaired but that a normal growth of rIHNV-Delta NV can be restored when NV is provided in trans by using fish cell clones constitutively expressing the NV protein. These results indicate that NV is a protein that has a crucial biological role for optimal replication of IHNV in cell culture. Although IHNV and VHSV NV proteins do not share any significant identity, we show here that both NV proteins play a similar role since a recombinant IHNV virus, rIHNV-NV(VHSV), in which the IHNV NV open reading frame has been replaced by that of VHSV, was shown to replicate as well as the wild-type (wt) IHNV into fish cells. Finally, data provided by experimental fish infections with the various recombinant viruses strongly suggest an essential role of the NV protein for the pathogenicity of IHNV. Furthermore, we show that juvenile trout immunized with NV-knockout IHNV were protected against challenge with wt IHNV. That opens a new perspective for the development of IHNV attenuated live vaccines.[1]


  1. Essential role of the NV protein of Novirhabdovirus for pathogenicity in rainbow trout. Thoulouze, M.I., Bouguyon, E., Carpentier, C., Brémont, M. J. Virol. (2004) [Pubmed]
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