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J Virol. 2014 May;88(10):5543-58. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00041-14. Epub 2014 Mar 5.

Virulence-associated genome mutations of murine rotavirus identified by alternating serial passages in mice and cell cultures.

Author information

1
Department of Pediatrics, Sapporo Medical University School of Medicine, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan.

Abstract

Although significant clinical efficacy and safety of rotavirus vaccines were recently revealed in many countries, the mechanism of their attenuation is not well understood. We passaged serially a cell culture-adapted murine rotavirus EB strain in mouse pups or in cell cultures alternately and repeatedly and fully sequenced all 11 genes of 21 virus samples passaged in mice or in cell cultures. Sequence analysis revealed that mouse-passaged viruses that regained virulence almost consistently acquired four kinds of amino acid (aa) substitutions in VP4 and substitution in aa 37 (Val to Ala) in NSP4. In addition, they gained and invariably conserved the 3' consensus sequence in NSP1. The molecular changes occurred along with the acquisition of virulence during passages in mice and then disappeared following passages in cell cultures. Intraperitoneal injection of recombinant NSP4 proteins confirmed the aa 37 site as important for its diarrheagenic activity in mice. These genome changes are likely to be correlated with rotavirus virulence.

IMPORTANCE:

Serial passage of a virulent wild-type virus in vitro often results in loss of virulence of the virus in an original animal host, while serial passage of a cell culture-adapted avirulent virus in vivo often gains virulence in an animal host. Actually, live attenuated virus vaccines were originally produced by serial passage in cell cultures. Although clinical efficacy and safety of rotavirus vaccines were recently revealed, the mechanism of their attenuation is not well understood. We passaged serially a murine rotavirus by alternating switch of host (mice or cell cultures) repeatedly and sequenced the eleven genes of the passaged viruses to identify mutations associated with the emergence or disappearance of virulence. Sequence analysis revealed that changes in three genes (VP4, NSP1, and NSP4) were associated with virulence in mice. Intraperitoneal injection of recombinant NSP4 proteins confirmed its diarrheagenic activity in mice. These genome changes are likely to be correlated with rotavirus virulence.

PMID:
24599996
PMCID:
PMC4019127
DOI:
10.1128/JVI.00041-14
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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