Characterization of an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase activity associated with La France isometric virus

Michael M. Goodin, Beth Schlagnhaufer, Tiffany Weir, C. Peter Romaine

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12 Scopus citations


Purified preparations of La France isometric virus (LIV), an unclassified, double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) virus of Agaricus bisporus, were associated with an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RDRP) activity. RDRP activity cosedimented with the 36-nm isometric particles and genomic dsRNAs of LIV during rate-zonal centrifugation in sucrose density gradients, suggesting that the enzyme is a constituent of the virion. Enzyme activity was maximal in the presence of all four nucleotides, a reducing agent (dithiothreitol or β-mercaptoethanol), and Mg2+ and was resistant to inhibitors of DNA-dependent RNA polymerases (actinomycin D, α-amanitin, and rifampin). The radiolabeled enzyme reaction products were predominantly (95%) single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) as determined by cellulose column chromatography and ionic-strength-dependent sensitivity to hydrolysis by RNase A. Three major size classes of ssRNA transcripts of 0.95, 1.3, and 1.8 kb were detected by agarose gel electrophoresis, although the transcripts hybridized to all nine of the virion-associated dsRNAs. The RNA products synthesized in vitro appeared to be of a single polarity, as they hybridized to an ssDNA corresponding to one strand of a genomic dsRNA and not to the complementary strand. Similarly, reverse transcription-PCR with total cellular ssRNA as a template and strand-specific primers targeting a genomic dsRNA during synthesis of cDNA suggested that only the coding strand was transcribed in vivo. Our data indicate that the RDRP activity associated with virions of LIV is probably a transcriptase engaged in the synthesis of ssRNA transcripts corresponding to each of the virion-associated dsRNAs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2264-2269
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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