Send to

Choose Destination
Structure. 1996 Apr 15;4(4):387-94.

Difference imaging reveals ordered regions of RNA in turnip yellow mosaic virus.

Author information

Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK.



Turnip yellow mosaic virus (TYMV) is a small icosahedral plant virus with a capsid containing 180 subunits arranged with hexamer-pentamer clustering. Cross-linking studies have indicated extensive contacts between RNA and coat protein, suggesting that substantial parts of the RNA might be icosahedrally ordered.


Comparison of maps computed to a Fourier cut-off of 1.5 nm from electron micrographs of ice-embedded specimens of TYMV and of empty capsids produced by freeze-thawing reveals strong inner features around the threefold axes in the virus but not in the empty capsid. Internal features of subunit packing indicate that interhexamer contacts are closer than those between pentamers and hexamers and that pentamer density in the empty capsid is reduced relative to that in the virus.


The differences between virus and empty capsid indicate that substantial parts of the RNA are icosahedrally ordered and that the exit of RNA on freeze-thawing is accompanied by the loss of at least one pentamer unit.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center