Linda K. Dixon

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African swine fever (ASF) is a devastating haemorrhagic fever of pigs with mortality rates approaching 100 per cent. It causes major economic losses, threatens food security and limits pig production in affected countries. ASF is caused by a large DNA virus, African swine fever virus (ASFV). There is no vaccine against ASFV and this limits the options for(More)
A closed-tube polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was developed to allow the rapid detection of African swine fever virus (ASFV) DNA. This assay targets the VP72 gene of ASFV and uses the 5'-nuclease assay (TaqMan) system to detect PCR amplicons, avoiding tube opening and potential cross-contamination of post-PCR products. An artificial mimic was engineered(More)
The transcription factor NFAT (nuclear factor of activated T cells) controls the expression of many immunomodulatory proteins. African swine fever virus inhibits proinflammatory cytokine expression in infected macrophages, and a viral protein A238L was found to display the activity of the immunosuppressive drug cyclosporin A by inhibiting NFAT-regulated(More)
Variable regions of the African swine fever virus genome, which contain arrays of tandem repeats, were compared in the genomes of isolates obtained over a 40-year period. Comparison of the size of products generated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) from four different genome regions, within the B602L and KP86R genes and intergenic regions J286L and BtSj,(More)
African swine fever virus (ASFV) can cause an acutely fatal haemorrhagic fever in domestic pigs although in its natural hosts, warthogs, bushpigs and the soft tick vector, Ornithodoros moubata, ASFV causes inapparent persistent infections. The virus is a large, cytoplasmic, double-stranded DNA virus which has a tropism for macrophages. As it is the only(More)
Ten African swine fever virus isolates from the soft tick Ornithodoros erraticus collected on three farms in the province of Alentejo in Portugal were characterized by their ability to cause haemadsorption (HAD) of red blood cells to infected pig macrophages, using restriction enzyme site mapping of the virus genomes and by experimental infection of pigs.(More)
Cytokines stimulate inflammatory defenses against viral infections. In order to evade host defenses, viruses have developed strategies to counteract antiviral cytokines. African swine fever virus (ASFV) is a large, double-stranded DNA virus that infects macrophages. This study demonstrates that ASFV effectively inhibited phorbol myristic acid-induced(More)
Dynein is a minus-end-directed microtubule-associated motor protein involved in cargo transport in the cytoplasm. African swine fever virus (ASFV), a large DNA virus, hijacks the microtubule motor complex cellular transport machinery during virus infection of the cell through direct binding of virus protein p54 to the light chain of cytoplasmic dynein(More)
African swine fever virus (ASFV) is a large icosahedral DNA virus which replicates predominantly in the cytoplasm of infected cells. The ASFV double-stranded DNA genome varies in length from about 170 to 193 kbp depending on the isolate and contains between 150 and 167 open reading frames. These are closely spaced and read from both DNA strands. The virus(More)
The African swine fever virus protein A238L inhibits activation of NFAT transcription factor by binding calcineurin and inhibiting its phosphatase activity. NFAT controls the expression of many immunomodulatory proteins. Here we describe a 14-amino-acid region of A238L that is needed and sufficient for binding to calcineurin. By introducing mutations within(More)