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Polysomally protected viruses.

Authors
  • Wilkinson, Michael1, 2
  • Yllanes, David1
  • Huber, Greg1
  • 1 Chan Zuckerberg Biohub, 499 Illinois Street, San Francisco, CA 94158, United States of America. , (United States)
  • 2 School of Mathematics and Statistics, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA, United Kingdom. , (United Kingdom)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Physical Biology
Publisher
IOP Publishing
Publication Date
Jun 24, 2021
Volume
18
Issue
4
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1088/1478-3975/abf5b5
PMID: 33827061
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

It is conceivable that an RNA virus could use a polysome, that is, a string of ribosomes covering the RNA strand, to protect the genetic material from degradation inside a host cell. This paper discusses how such a virus might operate, and how its presence might be detected by ribosome profiling. There are two possible forms for such apolysomally protected virus, depending upon whether just the forward strand or both the forward and complementary strands can be encased by ribosomes (these will be termed type 1 and type 2, respectively). It is argued that in the type 2 case the viral RNA would evolve anambigrammaticproperty, whereby the viral genes are free of stop codons in a reverse reading frame (with forward and reverse codons aligned). Recent observations of ribosome profiles of ambigrammatic narnavirus sequences are consistent with our predictions for the type 2 case. Creative Commons Attribution license.

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