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The influenza A virus PB2 polymerase subunit is required for the replication of viral RNA.

By B Perales and J Ortín


The transcription and replication of influenza virus RNA (vRNA) were reconstituted in vivo. The experimental approach involved the transfection of plasmids encoding the viral subunits of the polymerase and the nucleoprotein into cells infected with a vaccinia virus recombinant virus expressing the T7 RNA polymerase. As templates, one of two model RNAs was transfected: vNSZ or cNSZ RNA. The RNAs were 240 nucleotides in length, contained the terminal sequences of the NS viral segment, and were of negative or positive polarity, respectively. The accumulation of cRNA and mRNA in cells transfected with vNSZ RNA and the accumulation of vRNA and mRNA in cells transfected with cNSZ RNA were determined by RNase protection assays with labeled vNSZ-L or cNSZ-L probes. The patterns of protected bands obtained indicated that both cRNA replication intermediate and mRNA accumulated when the system was reconstituted with vNSZ RNA. Likewise, both vRNA and mRNA accumulated after reconstitution with cNSZ RNA. The reconstitution of incomplete systems in which any of the subunits of the polymerase or the model RNA were omitted was completely negative for the accumulation of cRNA or vRNA, indicating that the presence of the PB2 subunit in the polymerase is required for replication of vRNA

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1997
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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