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1VZV: Structure Of Varicella-Zoster Virus Protease
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. (1997) 94 p.2874-2879» All references (2)
Varicella-zoster virus (VZV), an alpha-herpes virus, is the causative agent of chickenpox, shingles, and postherpetic neuralgia. The three-dimensional crystal structure of the serine protease from VZV has been determined at 3.0-A resolution. The VZV protease is essential for the life cycle of the virus and is a potential target for therapeutic intervention. The structure reveals an overall fold that is similar to that recently reported for the serine protease from cytomegalovirus (CMV), a herpes virus of the beta subfamily. The VZV protease structure provides further evidence to support the finding that herpes virus proteases have a fold and active site distinct from other serine proteases. The VZV protease catalytic triad consists of a serine and two histidines. The distal histidine is proposed to properly orient the proximal histidine. The identification of an alpha-helical segment in the VZV protease that was mostly disordered in the CMV protease provides a better definition of the postulated active site cavity and reveals an elastase-like S' region. Structural differences between the VZV and CMV proteases also suggest potential differences in their oligomerization states.