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Virus Genes. 2012 Apr;44(2):273-85. doi: 10.1007/s11262-011-0696-3. Epub 2011 Dec 16.

Comparative full genome analysis of four infectious laryngotracheitis virus (Gallid herpesvirus-1) virulent isolates from the United States.

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  • 1United States Department of Agriculture, Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory, Agricultural Research Service, Athens, GA 30605, USA. Stephen.Spatz@ars.usda.gov

Abstract

Gallid herpesvirus-1 (GaHV-1), commonly named infectious laryngotracheitis (ILT) virus, causes the respiratory disease in chickens known as ILT. The molecular determinants associated with differences in pathogenicity of GaHV-1 strains are not completely understood, and a comparison of genomic sequences of isolates that belong to different genotypes could help identify genes involved in virulence. Dideoxy sequencing, 454 pyrosequencing and Illumina sequencing-by-synthesis were used to determine the nucleotide sequences of four genotypes of virulent strains from GaHV-1 groups I-VI. Three hundred and twenty-five open reading frames (ORFs) were compared with those of the recently sequenced genome of the Serva vaccine strain. Only four ORFs, ORF C, U(L)37, ICP4 and U(S)2 differed in amino acid (aa) lengths among the newly sequenced genomes. Genome sequence alignments were used to identify two regions (5' terminus and the unique short/repeat short junction) that contained deletions. Seventy-eight synonymous and 118 non-synonymous amino acid substitutions were identified with the examined ORFs. Exclusive to the genome of the Serva vaccine strain, seven non-synonymous mutations were identified in the predicted translation products of the genes encoding glycoproteins gB, gE, gL and gM and three non-structural proteins U(L)28 (DNA packaging protein), U(L)5 (helicase-primase) and the immediate early protein ICP4. Furthermore, our comparative sequence analysis of published and newly sequenced GaHV-1 isolates has provided evidence placing the cleavage/packaging site (a-like sequence) within the inverted repeats instead of its placement at the 3' end of the U(L) region as annotated in the GenBank's entries NC006623 and HQ630064.

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