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Virus Res. 1994 Dec;34(3):291-304.

Nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequences of the matrix (M) and fusion (F) protein genes of cetacean morbilliviruses isolated from a porpoise and a dolphin.

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Department of Veterinary Microbiology, The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Fredericksberg, Denmark.


Morbilliviruses have been isolated from stranded dolphins and porpoises. The present paper describes the cloning and sequencing of the porpoise morbillivirus (PMV) F gene and of the dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) M and F genes and their flanking regions. The gene order of the DMV genome appeared to be identical to that of other morbilliviruses. A genomic untranslated region of 837 nucleotides was found between the translated DMV M and F gene regions. The predicted DMV M protein were highly conserved with those of other morbilliviruses. Both the deduced PMV and DMV F0 proteins exhibited three major hydrophobic regions as well as a cysteine rich region, a leucine zipper motif and a cleavage motif allowing cleavage of the F0 protein into F1 and F2 subunits. Apparently the DMV F0 cleavage motif was not modified by adaptation of DMV to Vero cells. The predicted PMV and DMV F proteins were 94% identical. Comparisons with the corresponding sequences of other morbilliviruses demonstrated that the cetacean morbillivirus does not derive from any known morbillivirus but represents an independent morbillivirus lineage.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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