The objective of this study was to identify the active form of the feline calicivirus (FCV) RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP). Multiple active forms of the FCV RdRP were identified. The most active enzyme was the full-length proteinase-polymerase (Pro-Pol) precursor protein, corresponding to amino acids 1072 to 1763 of the FCV polyprotein encoded by open reading frame 1 of the genome. Deletion of 163 amino acids from the amino terminus of Pro-Pol (the Val-1235 amino terminus) caused a threefold reduction in polymerase activity. Deletion of an additional one (the Thr-1236 amino terminus) or two (the Ala-1237 amino terminus) amino acids produced derivatives that were 7- and 175-fold, respectively, less active than Pro-Pol. FCV proteinase-dependent processing of Pro-Pol in the interdomain region preceding Val-1235 was not observed in the presence of a catalytically active proteinase; however, processing within the polymerase domain was observed. Inactivation of proteinase activity by changing the catalytic cysteine-1193 to glycine permitted the production and purification of intact Pro-Pol. Biochemical analysis of Pro-Pol showed that this enzyme has properties expected of a replicative polymerase, suggesting that Pro-Pol is an active form of the FCV RdRP.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science