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J Virol. 2008 Oct;82(19):9546-54. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00895-08. Epub 2008 Jul 30.

Structure of flexible filamentous plant viruses.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Box 351634, Station B, Nashville, TN 37235, USA.


Flexible filamentous viruses make up a large fraction of the known plant viruses, but in comparison with those of other viruses, very little is known about their structures. We have used fiber diffraction, cryo-electron microscopy, and scanning transmission electron microscopy to determine the symmetry of a potyvirus, soybean mosaic virus; to confirm the symmetry of a potexvirus, potato virus X; and to determine the low-resolution structures of both viruses. We conclude that these viruses and, by implication, most or all flexible filamentous plant viruses share a common coat protein fold and helical symmetry, with slightly less than 9 subunits per helical turn.

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