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Identification and mapping of a region on the mRNA of Morbillivirus nucleoprotein susceptible to RNA interference

Keita D., Servan de Almeida R., Libeau G., Albina E.. 2008. Antiviral Research, 80 (2) : p. 158-167.

DOI: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2008.06.006

The morbillivirus genus includes important pathogens such as measles virus (MV), peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV), and rinderpest virus (RPV) and forms a group of antigenically related viruses. The viral nucleoprotein (N) is a well-conserved protein among the genus and plays a central role in the replication of the virus. Using a comprehensive approach for siRNA screening of the conserved sequences of the N gene, including sequence analysis and functional in vitro tests, we have identified a region for the design of siRNA effective for the control of PPRV, RPV, and MV replication. Silencing of the N mRNA efficiently shuts down the production of N transcripts, the expression of N protein, and the indirect inhibition of matrix protein, resulting in the inhibition of PPRV progeny by 10,000-fold. These results suggest that siRNA against this region should be further explored as a therapeutic strategy for morbillivirus infections.

Mots-clés : morbillivirus; identification; carte génétique; peste des petits ruminants; virus peste petits ruminants; contrôle de maladies; arn messager; arn

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