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Arch Virol. 1996;141(12):2387-408.

Physical and genetic maps of the human herpesvirus 7 strain SB genome.

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  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


Human herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7) is a close relative of human herpesvirus 6A (HHV-6A) and human herpesvirus 6B (HHV-6B) based on limited biologic and genetic data. In this work we describe physical and genetic maps for HHV-7 strain SB [HHV-7(SB)], which was obtained from the saliva of a healthy adult. The HHV-7(SB) genome length is approximately 144 kb by clamped homogeneous electric field gel electrophoresis and approximately 135 kb by summation of restriction endonuclease fragments. We constructed plasmid clones and PCR amplimers that span the HHV-7 genome, except for the genomic termini, and determined the maps of the restriction endonuclease cleavage sites for BamHI, PstI, and SacI. The HHV-7(SB) genome is composed of a single unique region of approximately 122 kb bounded at each end by a 6 kb direct repeat. Homologs to thirty-five herpesvirus genes were identified. The highest similarity was with the HHV-6 genes, with an average amino acid identity of 50%, followed by the human cytomegalovirus counterpart. The genomic and genetic maps indicated that the HHV-7 and HHV-6 genomes are colinear. There was no sequence variation in a segment of the gene encoding the DNA polymerase-associated factor homolog among six HHV-7 isolates, while the corresponding segment of the HHV-6A and HHV-6B counterparts differed by 4.6%. These data support previous observations that the closest genetic relatives of HHV-7 are betaherpesviruses.

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