Cloning the simian varicella virus genome in E. coli as an infectious bacterial artificial chromosome

Gray WL, etc
Arch Virol, 2011

Simian varicella virus (SVV) is closely related to human varicella-zoster virus and causes varicella and zoster-like disease in nonhuman primates. In this study, a mini-F replicon was inserted into a SVV cosmid, and infectious SVV was generated by co-transfection of Vero cells with overlapping SVV cosmids. The entire SVV genome, cloned as a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC), was stably propagated upon serial passage in E. coli. Transfection of pSVV-BAC DNA into Vero cells yielded infectious SVV (rSVV-BAC). The mini-F vector sequences flanked by loxP sites were removed by co-infection of Vero cells with rSVV-BAC and adenovirus expressing Cre-recombinase. Recombinant SVV generated using the SVV-BAC genetic system has similar molecular and in vitro replication properties as wild-type SVV. To demonstrate the utility of this approach, a SVV ORF 10 deletion mutant was created using two-step Red-mediated recombination. The results indicate that SVV ORF 10, which encodes a homolog of the HSV-1 virion VP-16 transactivator protein, is not essential for in vitro replication but is required for optimal replication in cell culture.

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Arch Virol