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Virology. 1989 Dec;173(2):664-73.

Sequence analysis reveals extensive polymorphism and evidence of deletions within the E2 glycoprotein gene of several strains of murine hepatitis virus.

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Department of Immunology, Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation, La Jolla, California 92037.


Direct RNA sequence analysis of the E2 gene of wild-type MHV-4 and of neutralization resistant, neuroattenuated variants has identified a polymorphic region with respect to deletions. These variants had large deletions of 142 to 159 amino acids mapping to a localized region in the amino-terminal domain of the peplomer glycoprotein. The nucleotide sequence of the E2 gene for wild-type strain MHV-4 was found to be very similar to that of MHV-JHM but had an insertion of 423 nucleotides resulting in the addition of a stretch of 141 unique amino acids in the amino-terminal domain of E2. We propose that deletions reflect a major source of heterogeneity in the E2 protein of MHV.

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