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01.12.2018 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Virology Journal 1/2018

Generation and characterization of UL41 null pseudorabies virus variant in vitro and in vivo

Zeitschrift:
Virology Journal > Ausgabe 1/2018
Autoren:
Chao Ye, Jing Chen, Tao Wang, Jingjing Xu, Hao Zheng, Jiqiang Wu, Guoxin Li, Zhiqing Yu, Wu Tong, Xuefei Cheng, Shasha Zhou, Guangzhi Tong
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1186/​s12985-018-1025-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Abstract

Background

The alphaherpesvirus virion host shutoff (vhs) gene, UL41, can induce degradation of host mRNAs and shut off host protein synthesis. The roles of vhs in HSV-1 and HSV-2 have been studied extensively in previous studies, however, relatively little is known about the vhs protein of PRV.

Methods

A novel method combining CRISPR/Cas9 and Gibson assembly was developed to generate UL41 null PRV variant. The properties of UL41 null PRV in vitro and in vivo were further characterized. And the vhs activity of UL41 protein of PRV variant was evaluated by luciferase assay, Western-blot and RT-qPCR.

Results

Gibson assembly based on homologous recombination can accomplish one-step insertion of viral DNA fragments into donor plasmids efficiently (> 80%). Cas9/gRNA further largely enhanced the efficiency of homologous recombination. Using this method we were able to rapidly generate the UL41 null and revertant viruses of PRV variant. Compared to wild type (JS-2012), the UL41 null virus showed significantly smaller plaques and lower titers in Vero cells and impaired lethality and neuroinvasion in mice. Further the UL41 protein from different PRV strains exhibited unequal vhs activity in vitro, which of JS-2012 showed significantly weaker vhs activity than that of European-American strains. In addition UL41 null virus can also significantly decrease the expression of host genes during the early period of infection, which suggests other viral factors may be also involved in host shutoff.

Conclusions

CRISPR/Cas9 combined with Gibson assembly efficiently generated UL41 null PRV. Compared to wild type, UL41 null PRV showed impaired both replication capability in vitro and neuroinvasion in vivo. Further UL41 protein of PRV variant showed significantly weaker vhs activity than that of PRV SC (European-American-like strain), suggesting the deficiency of vhs activity by the PRV variant UL41 protein.
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