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BACKGROUND Recent advances in genomics of viruses and cellular life forms have greatly stimulated interest in the origins and evolution of viruses and, for the first time, offer an opportunity for a data-driven exploration of the deepest roots of viruses. Here we briefly review the current views of virus evolution and propose a new, coherent scenario that(More)
Molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV) commonly causes asymptomatic cutaneous neoplasms in children and sexually active adults as well as persistent opportunistic acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)-associated disease. Sequencing the 190-kilobase pair genome of MCV has now revealed that the virus potentially encodes 163 proteins, of which 103 have homologs(More)
To identify novel antiapoptotic proteins encoded by DNA viruses, we searched viral genomes for proteins that might interfere with Fas and TNFR1 apoptotic signaling pathways. We report here that equine herpesvirus type 2 E8 protein and molluscum contagiosum virus MC159 protein both show sequence similarity to the death effector domains (DEDs) of the(More)
Analysis of the molluscum contagiosum virus (MCV) genome revealed that it encodes approximately 182 proteins, 105 of which have direct counterparts in orthopoxviruses (OPV). The corresponding OPV proteins comprise those known to be essential for replication as well as many that are still uncharacterized, including 2 of less than 60 amino acids that had not(More)
Poxviruses reproduce in the host cytoplasm and encode most or all of the enzymes and factors needed for expression and synthesis of their double-stranded DNA genomes. Nevertheless, the mode of poxvirus DNA replication and the nature and location of the replication origins remain unknown. A current but unsubstantiated model posits only leading strand(More)
Proteins of the ERV1/ALR family are encoded by all eukaryotes and cytoplasmic DNA viruses for which substantial sequence information is available. Nevertheless, the roles of these proteins are imprecisely known. Multiple alignments of ERV1/ALR proteins indicated an invariant C-X-X-C motif, but no similarity to the thioredoxin fold was revealed by secondary(More)
Selenium, an essential trace element, is a component of prokaryotic and eukaryotic antioxidant proteins. A candidate selenoprotein homologous to glutathione peroxidase was deduced from the sequence of molluscum contagiosum, a poxvirus that causes persistent skin neoplasms in children and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) patients. Selenium was(More)
Statistically significant sequence similarity was revealed between the gene A32 product of vaccinia virus (VV), gene I products (gpI) of filamentous single-stranded DNA bacteriophages, and IVa2 gene products of adenoviruses. Four conserved sequence motifs were delineated, the two N-proximal of which correspond to the A and B motifs of the purine NTP-binding(More)
The DNA sequence of a 2060-bp fragment from the left-hand end of the ectromelia (mousepox) virus genome was determined. Two genes were identified coding for 28 kDa (p28) and 16 kDa (p16) proteins, both of which are disrupted in vaccinia virus but conserved in variola (smallpox) virus. p16 contains an N-terminal hydrophobic region and may be a membrane or(More)
We show that three cytoplasmic thiol oxidoreductases encoded by vaccinia virus comprise a complete pathway for formation of disulfide bonds in intracellular virion membrane proteins. The pathway was defined by analyzing conditional lethal mutants and effects of cysteine to serine substitutions and by trapping disulfide-bonded heterodimer intermediates for(More)