Genetic fusion of peste des petits ruminants virus haemagglutinin and fusion protein domains to the amino terminal subunit of glycoprotein B of bovine herpesvirus 1 interferes with transport and function of gB for BHV-1 infectious replication.
Peste des petits ruminants is an emerging, often fatal viral disease of domestic and wild small ruminants caused by peste des petits ruminants virus. The haemagglutinin and the fusion protein are viral envelope glycoproteins and essential for the infection process and both induce a protective immune response in infected or vaccinated animals. Attempts to generate pseudotyped bovine herpesvirus 1 recombinants firstly by integration of expression cassettes for PPRV-H and PPRV-F into the herpesviral genome or secondly to generate pseudotyped BHV-1 by genetically fusing relevant parts of both PPRV glycoproteins to the amino-terminal subunit of glycoprotein B, approaches that had been successful for heterologous viral membrane glycoproteins in the past, failed repeatedly. We therefore analyzed at which intracellular stage generation of viable BHV-1 hybrid-gB recombinants might be inhibited. Results obtained from transient protein expression experiments revealed that, dependent on the fusion protein, transport of the hybrid glycoproteins beyond the endoplasmic reticulum is impeded. Thus, expression of heterologous glycoproteins using BHV-1 interferes more than expected from published experience with BHV-1 gB transport and consequently with virus replication.
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