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

Characterization of a pre-S polypeptide on the surfaces of infectious avian hepadnavirus particles.

DNA from the pre-S region of the duck hepatitis B virus (DHBV) genome was inserted into an open reading frame vector designed to give high-level expression in Escherichia coli. The resulting fusion protein contained the first 8 amino acids of beta-galactosidase, 86 amino acids of the DHBV pre-S region, and 219 amino acids of chloramphenicol acetyltransferase at the C terminus (beta-gal:pre-S:CAT). Rabbit antiserum against purified beta-gal:pre-S:CAT was used to identify pre-S-containing polypeptides in DHBV particles by Western blotting. A dominant species of 36 kilodaltons (kDa) was identified. Antiserum against the major 17-kDa DHBsAg polypeptide also reacted with the 36-kDa protein. This suggests that the DHBV envelope gene polypeptides share the same carboxyl terminus, but differ in the sites from which translation is initiated. N-linked carbohydrate was not detected on either the 17- or 36-kDa envelope proteins. Anti-beta-gal:pre-S:CAT abolished infectivity of the virus in an in vitro assay. Thus, the pre-S region is exposed on the surfaces of infectious virions and may be directly involved in binding of virus to host-cell receptors.[1]


  1. Characterization of a pre-S polypeptide on the surfaces of infectious avian hepadnavirus particles. Pugh, J.C., Sninsky, J.J., Summers, J.W., Schaeffer, E. J. Virol. (1987) [Pubmed]
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