The Acheta domesticus densovirus (AdDNV), isolated from crickets, has been endemic in Europe for at least 35 years. Severe epizootics have also been observed in American commercial rearings since 2009 and 2010. The AdDNV genome was cloned and sequenced for this study. The transcription map showed that splicing occurred in both the nonstructural (NS) and capsid protein (VP) multicistronic RNAs. The splicing pattern of NS mRNA predicted 3 nonstructural proteins (NS1 [576 codons], NS2 [286 codons], and NS3 [213 codons]). The VP gene cassette contained two VP open reading frames (ORFs), of 597 (ORF-A) and 268 (ORF-B) codons. The VP2 sequence was shown by N-terminal Edman degradation and mass spectrometry to correspond with ORF-A. Mass spectrometry, sequencing, and Western blotting of baculovirus-expressed VPs versus native structural proteins demonstrated that the VP1 structural protein was generated by joining ORF-A and -B via splicing (splice II), eliminating the N terminus of VP2. This splice resulted in a nested set of VP1 (816 codons), VP3 (467 codons), and VP4 (429 codons) structural proteins. In contrast, the two splices within ORF-B (Ia and Ib) removed the donor site of intron II and resulted in VP2, VP3, and VP4 expression. ORF-B may also code for several nonstructural proteins, of 268, 233, and 158 codons. The small ORF-B contains the coding sequence for a phospholipase A2 motif found in VP1, which was shown previously to be critical for cellular uptake of the virus. These splicing features are unique among parvoviruses and define a new genus of ambisense densoviruses.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science