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Why negative strand RNA viruses?(was:none)

ROOSSINCK,MARILYN roossinck at aardvark.ucs.uoknor.edu
Thu Oct 6 19:36:00 EST 1994

In article <94278.102932IO00865 at MAINE.MAINE.EDU>, Ethan Strauss <IO00865 at MAINE.MAINE.EDU> writes...
>In article <1994Oct5.001317.18360 at marlin.jcu.edu.au>, robert at chironex.jcu.edu.au
>>In article <36r760$u7 at hermod.uio.no> ohungnes at bioslave.uio.no (Olav Hungnes)
>>Is there any evidence that amongst the (+)-strand virions there are some
>>containing particles also ? At a pinch, with todays PCR technology we should
>>able to answer that question if it hasn't already been done.
>I have actually done this experiment for Potato Virus X.
>To the limit of our ability to detect it (pretty small amounts)
>there is not - sense PVX packaged in with the + sense in the virions.
>I don't know about other + sense viruses.
>About why - sense viruses exist I think that perhaps the best answer
>is: Why not? Evolution just does whatever happens to work at the
>time, not what would be objectivly the "best".
>Ethan Strauss  

Cucumber mosaic virus sometimes harbors a molecular parasite satellite RNA, 
and the packaged strand of the satellite has by convention been called the 
(+) strand, even though it doesn't encode any proteins.  Recently we have 
found a small but significant amount of (-) strand satellite RNA in virion
RNA, by PCR.  We haven't yet checked the genomic RNAs.

M.J. Roossinck
The S.R. Noble Foundation

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