Parvoviruses were isolated from Python regius and Boa constrictor snakes and propagated in viper heart (VH-2) and iguana heart (IgH-2) cells. The full-length genome of a snake parvovirus was cloned and both strands were sequenced. The organization of the 4432-nt-long genome was found to be typical of parvoviruses. This genome was flanked by inverted terminal repeats (ITRs) of 154 nt, containing 122 nt terminal hairpins and contained two large open reading frames, encoding the non-structural and structural proteins. Genes of this new parvovirus were most similar to those from waterfowl parvoviruses and from adeno-associated viruses (AAVs), albeit to a relatively low degree and with some organizational differences. The structure of its ITRs also closely resembled those of AAVs. Based on these data, we propose to classify this virus, the first serpentine parvovirus to be identified, as serpentine adeno-associated virus (SAAV) in the genus Dependovirus.
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