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J Virol. 1989 Feb;63(2):901-11.

Nucleotide sequence of the human polyomavirus AS virus, an antigenic variant of BK virus.

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  • 1Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park 16802.


The complete DNA sequence of the human polyomavirus AS virus (ASV) is presented. Although ASV can be differentiated antigenically from the other human polyomaviruses (BK and JC viruses), it shares 94.9% homology at the nucleotide level with the Dunlop strain of BK virus. Differences found in ASV relative to BK virus include the absence of tandem repeats in its regulatory region, the deletion of 32 nucleotides in the late mRNA leader region (altering the initiation codon for the agnoprotein), the presence of a cluster of base pair substitutions within the coding region of the major capsid protein, VP1, and the absence of 4 amino acids in the carboxy-terminal region of the early protein, T antigen. The 43 nucleotides deleted in the Dunlop strain of BK virus relative to the Gardner prototype strain of BK virus are present in ASV. Possible reasons for the distinct antigenicity of the ASV capsid, given the high degree of nucleotide homology with BK virus, are discussed. To reflect the high degree of sequence homology between ASV and BK virus, we suggest ASV be renamed BKV(AS).

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