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Virology. 2009 Dec 5;395(1):152-60. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2009.09.011. Epub 2009 Oct 1.

Virion-associated viral fibroblast growth factor stimulates cell motility.

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  • 1Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology Program, Division of Biology, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506-4901, USA.


The Autographa californica M nucleopolyhedrovirus (AcMNPV) viral fibroblast growth factor (vFGF) has functional parallels to cellular FGFs. Deletion of the AcMNPV vfgf has no obvious phenotype in cell culture but delays the time of insect death. Here, we determined vFGF production during virus infection. vFGF was detected at 24 hours post infection and through the remainder of the infection cycle. Since vFGF is thought to be a secreted membrane-binding protein and virions acquire an envelope derived from the cell membrane, we examined virions for the presence of vFGF using microscopy, flow cytometry, and affinity chromatography. We found that vFGF associated with virions. Furthermore, budded virus carrying vFGF had more affinity to heparin than vFGF-deficient budded virus, consistent with the affinity of FGFs for heparan sulfate proteoglycans. Although the function of virion-associated vFGF is not clear, we found that virion-associated vFGF stimulated cell motility and affected virus attachment.

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