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Arch Virol. 1992;125(1-4):177-91.

Molecular and ultrastructural analysis of heavy membrane fractions associated with the replication of Kunjin virus RNA.

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Department of Microbiology, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria, Australia.


In subcellular extracts of Kunjin virus-infected cells prepared by lysis and differential centrifugation, the viral RNA polymerase, RNA and proteins were associated mainly with cytoplasm. When the cytoplasmic extract (500 g supernate) of infected cells labelled for 3 h from 24 h post-infection was further fractionated by rapid centrifugation through a sucrose density gradient, all viral products were located only in dense or "heavy membrane" fractions, which contained three types of virus-induced morphologically distinct membrane structures. These dense fractions were treated with 0.5% NP40 and the soluble material was again centrifuged through a sucrose gradient for analyses as before. Viral RNA polymerase activity was retained and was associated with replicative intermediate RNA and some replicative form RNA in the peak enzyme fractions sedimenting at 20S to 40S. Enrichment of NS3 and of the small nonstructural proteins NS2A and NS2B/NS4A was apparent in these fractions which were well separated from the slow sedimenting structural proteins. No detergent-resistant structures in the "heavy membrane" fractions other than ribosome-like particles were visible. The data show that the RNA polymerase complex cosedimented with virus-induced membrane structures and remained associated with specific nonstructural proteins and replicative intermediate RNA after detergent treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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