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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 1992 Mar;8(3):395-402.

Genetic and biological comparisons of pathogenic and nonpathogenic molecular clones of simian immunodeficiency virus (SIVmac).

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  • 1Department of Medical Pathology, University of California, Davis 95616.

Abstract

Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) is a designation for a group of related but unique lentiviruses identified in several primate species. A viral isolate from a rhesus macaque (i.e., SIVmac) causes a fatal AIDS-like disease in experimentally infected macaques, and several infectious molecular clones of this virus have been characterized. This report presents the complete nucleotide sequence of molecularly cloned SIVmac1A11, and comparisons are made with the sequence of molecularly cloned SIVmac239. SIVmac1A11 has delayed replication kinetics in lymphoid cells but replicates as well as uncloned SIVmac in macrophage cultures. Macaques infected with virus from the SIVmac1A11 clone develop antiviral antibodies, but virus does not persist in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and no disease signs are observed. SIVmac239 infects lymphoid cells, shows restricted replication in cultured macrophages, and establishes a persistent infection in animals that leads to a fatal AIDS-like disease. Both viruses are about 98% homologous at the nucleotide sequence level. In SIVmac1A11, the vpr gene as well as the transmembrane domain of env are prematurely truncated, whereas the nef gene of SIVmac239 is prematurely truncated. Sequence differences are also noted in variable region 1 (V1) in the surface domain of the env gene. The potential implications of these and other sequence differences are discussed with respect to the phenotypes of both viruses. This animal model is critically important for investigating the roles of specific viral genes in viral/host interactions that cannot be studied in individuals infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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