Archive for September 11th, 2013

Barley stripe mosaic virus: Structure and relationship to the tobamoviruses

11 September, 2013

See on Scoop.itVirology and Bioinformatics from

Barley stripe mosaic virus (BSMV) is the type member of the genus Hordeivirus, rigid, rod-shaped viruses in the family Virgaviridae. We have used fiber diffraction and cryo-electron microscopy to determine the helical symmetry of BSMV to be 23.2 subunits per turn of the viral helix, and to obtain a low-resolution model of the virus by helical reconstruction methods. Features in the model support a structural relationship between the coat proteins of the hordeiviruses and the tobamoviruses.


Ed Rybicki‘s insight:

Speaking as someone who has worked with both viruses – I think I purified them in 1977-78 – and was immersed in the literature on both, I can recommend this as an EXCELLENT piece of old-school structural virology.


It comes as litttle surprise to hear that BSMV CP is structurally related to TMV and its ilk – the particles look SO much alike – but it is nice to see it confirmed finally!  The TMV structure came out in 1986, again from Gerald Stubbs’ lab (and some beautiful structures are shown here –, so this one has been lagging awhile.


I can finally update a speculative "modular evolution" diagram I constructed a while back, with actual evidence:


Meantime: I have a walk-in fridge full of highly purified virus particles, some dating back to the 1970s, just waiting to be structurally investigated….

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