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eISSN: 1643-3750

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Characterization of human cytomegalovirus UL145 and UL136 genes in low-passage clinical isolates from infected Chinese infants

Bo Wang, Jing-Jing Hu, Cui-Fang Yan, Hai-Hao Su, Jun-Cai Ding, Yuan-Yuan Guo, Ning Ye, Shui-Qing Zhang, Xiao-Zhuang Zhang, Shu-Feng Zhou

Med Sci Monit 2011; 17(8): CR423-431

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.881903


Background:    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in immunocompromised individuals. The unique long b’ (ULB’) region of HCMV contains at least 19 open reading frames (ORFs); however, little is known about the function of UL145 and UL136. We characterized UL145 and UL136 in low-passage clinical isolates from Chinese infants.
    Material/Methods:    The clinical strains of HCMV were recovered from the urine from HCMV-infected infants. Human embryonic lung fibroblasts (HELFs) were infected with clinical isolates of HCMV, and the viral DNA and mRNA for UL145 and UL136 were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing techniques. We also predicted the structure and function of UL145 and UL136 proteins.
    Results:    Sixty-two Chinese infants infected with HCMV were recruited into this study and the clinical isolates were recovered from the urine. Two strains among the low-passage isolates, D2 and D3, were obtained. The UL145 and UL136 sequences were deposited with GenBank under accession numbers of DQ180367, DQ180381, DQ180377, and DQ180389. The mRNA expression of both UL145 and UL136 was confirmed by reverse transcription (RT-PCR) assays. UL145 was predicted to contain 1 protein kinase C phosphorylation site, 2 casein kinase II phosphorylation sites and a zinc finger structure. UL136 was predicted to contain a protein kinase C phosphorylation site, N-myristoylation site, cAMP- and cGMP-dependent protein kinase phosphorylation site and tyrosine kinase II phosphorylation site. Both UL145 and UL136 are highly conserved.
    Conclusions:    UL145 may act as an intranuclear regulating factor by direct binding to DNA, while UL136 may be a membrane receptor involving signal transduction.

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