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J Virol. 2008 Jun;82(12):6078-83. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00074-08. Epub 2008 Apr 9.

Cleavage of group 1 coronavirus spike proteins: how furin cleavage is traded off against heparan sulfate binding upon cell culture adaptation.

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1
Virology Division, Department of Infectious Diseases and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary Medcine, Utrecht University, Yalelaan 1, 3584 CL Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Abstract

A longstanding enigmatic feature of the group 1 coronaviruses is the uncleaved phenotype of their spike protein, an exceptional property among class I fusion proteins. Here, however, we show that some group 1 coronavirus spike proteins carry a furin enzyme recognition motif and can actually be cleaved, as demonstrated for a feline coronavirus. Interestingly, this feature can be lost during cell culture adaptation by a single mutation in the cleavage motif; this, however, preserves a heparan sulfate binding motif and renders infection by the virus heparan sulfate dependent. We identified a similar cell culture adaptation for the human coronavirus OC43.

PMID:
18400867
PMCID:
PMC2395124
DOI:
10.1128/JVI.00074-08
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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