Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) origin of DNA replication oriS influences origin-dependent DNA replication and flanking gene transcription.

PMID 25795313


The VZV genome has two origins of DNA replication (oriS), each of which consists of an AT-rich sequence and three origin binding protein (OBP) sites called Box A, C and B. In these experiments, the mutation in the core sequence CGC of the Box A and C not only inhibited DNA replication but also inhibited both ORF62 and ORF63 expression in reporter gene assays. In contrast the Box B mutation did not influence DNA replication or flanking gene transcription. These results suggest that efficient DNA replication enhances ORF62 and ORF63 transcription. Recombinant viruses carrying these mutations in both sites and one with a deletion of the whole oriS were constructed. Surprisingly, the recombinant virus lacking both copies of oriS retained the capacity to replicate in melanoma and HELF cells suggesting that VZV has another origin of DNA replication.