High-Sequence Conservation among the United States Bluetongue Viruses Cognate M2 Genes Which Encode the Nonstructural NS1 Tubule Protein

Guang Yuh Hwang, Jwo Farn Chiou, Yi Yuan Yang, Joseph K K Li

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19 Citations (Scopus)


Full-length cDNA copies of the M2 gene of BTV-2, -11, and -13 serotypes obtained by a modified polymerase chain reaction (Clamp-R) were cloned into pUC19 plasmid. The entire nucleotide sequences of each M2 gene were determined and compared with BTV-10 and BTV-17, thus completing the sequencing of these cognate M2 gene segments from all five U.S. BTV serotypes. Each M2 segment contained 1769 nucleotides, a single open reading frame (ORF) with an initiation codon at nucleotides 35-37, and a termination codon at nucleotides 1691-1693. This ORF can encode the 552-amino-acid NS1 protein (64 KDa) which has an isoelectric point of 7. Analyses of the nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequences of the five U.S. BTV serotypes indicated that the most recently isolated BTV-2 serotype was more distantly related than BTV-10, -11, -13, or -17. Analyses of the evolutionary relatedness of the cognate M2 genes by codon positions indicate that the rate of mismatch accumulations in the first and second base codon positions are less than 4%. However, the mismatch accumulations in the third base codon position are quite evident (23%) when BTV-2 serotype was compared with the other U.S. BTV serotypes. This suggests that BTV-2 has separated from the other four U.S. serotypes long before they themselves diverged. These data also indicate that the five U.S. BTV serotypes were apparently derived from two distinct gene pools that reflected geographic distribution in North America.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)321-327
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1993
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

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