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Virology. 1993 Nov;197(1):283-92.

Paracrystalline structure of cauliflower mosaic virus aphid transmission factor produced both in plants and in a heterologous system and relationship with a solubilized active form.

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Station de Recherches de Pathologie Comparée, INRA-CNRS, Saint Christol-lez-Alès, France.


Cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV) aphid transmission factor (ATF), produced in a baculovirus expression system, forms paracrystalline structures, as demonstrated by electron microscopic observations. Similar paracrystals were also found in CaMV-infected plants, using immunogold techniques, thus providing the first evidence of such a structure for the CaMV ATF (P18). We demonstrated that the paracrystals can be solubilized to provide an active form of the CaMV ATF which can also be reverted into the paracrystalline aggregated form. This suggests that the paracrystalline structures might act as a source of active CaMV ATF or be the form in which it is stored within the infected cells. A point mutation within the CaMV gene II (which encodes the ATF) leads to the loss of both the paracrystalline structures and the ATF activity. Hence, the paracrystalline structure seems to be a feature of the native (unmodified ) CaMV ATF.

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