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Role of Actin Microfilaments in Black Creek Canal Virus Morphogenesis

  • Eugene V. Ravkov
  • Stuart T. Nichol
  • Clarence J. Peters
  • Richard W. Compans
American Society for Microbiology
Publication Date
Apr 01, 1998
  • Biology


We have investigated the involvement of cytoskeletal proteins in the morphogenesis of Black Creek Canal virus (BCCV), a New World hantavirus. Immunofluorescent staining of BCCV-infected cells revealed a filamentous pattern of virus antigen, the appearance of which was sensitive to treatment with cytochalasin D, an actin microfilament-depolymerizing drug. Double immunofluorescence staining of BCCV-infected Vero cells with anti-BCCV nucleocapsid (N) monoclonal antibody and phalloidin revealed a colocalization of the BCCV N protein with actin microfilaments. A similar, though less prominent, filamentous pattern was observed in BHK21 cells transiently expressing the BCCV N protein alone but not in cells expressing the BCCV G1 and G2 glycoproteins. Moreover, the association of the N protein with actin microfilaments was confirmed by coimmunoprecipitation with β-actin-specific antibody. Treatment of the BCCV-infected Vero cells at 3 days postinfection with cytochalasin D decreased the yield of released BCCV by 94% relative to the yield from untreated cells. Pretreatment of Vero cells with cytochalasin D prior to and during BCCV adsorption and entry had no effect on the outcome of virus production. These results indicate that actin filaments may play an important role in hantavirus assembly and/or release.

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