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Virology. 2002 Mar 30;295(1):119-32.

Analysis of the genomic sequence of a human metapneumovirus.

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Department of Virology, Erasmus Medical Center Rotterdam, Dr. Molewaterplein 50, Rotterdam, 3015 GE, The Netherlands.


We recently described the isolation of a novel paramyxovirus from children with respiratory tract disease in The Netherlands. Based on biological properties and limited sequence information the virus was provisionally classified as the first nonavian member of the Metapneumovirus genus and named human metapneumovirus (hMPV). This report describes the analysis of the sequences of all hMPV open reading frames (ORFs) and intergenic sequences as well as partial sequences of the genomic termini. The overall percentage of amino acid sequence identity between APV and hMPV N, P, M, F, M2-1, M2-2, and L ORFs was 56 to 88%. Some nucleotide sequence identity was also found between the noncoding regions of the APV and hMPV genomes. Although no discernible amino acid sequence identity was found between two of the ORFs of hMPV and ORFs of other paramyxoviruses, the amino acid content, hydrophilicity profiles, and location of these ORFs in the viral genome suggest that they represent SH and G proteins. The high percentage of sequence identity between APV and hMPV, their similar genomic organization (3'-N-P-M-F-M2-SH-G-L-5'), and phylogenetic analyses provide evidence for the proposed classification of hMPV as the first mammalian metapneumovirus.

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