Restricted quasispecies variation following infection with the GB virus B

Michael Joseph McGarvey, Mohammed Iqbal, Theodoros Nastos, Peter Karayiannis

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The extent of genetic variability following acute infection of tamarins with GB virus B (GBV-B) is not known. In this study we attempted to define the quasispecies variation of GBV-B 17 days post-infection, by PCR amplification of GBV-B RNA extracted from serum and liver. Cloning followed by sequencing revealed a small number of changes in the three regions studied, namely the 5′ untranslated region, E2 and NS3. Moreover, there was no region of high amino acid variability in E2, akin to hypervariable region 1 of hepatitis C virus. This was further confirmed by analysing sequences from two additional animals obtained at a similar time point post-infection. Nevertheless, it was apparent that different variants with one or two amino acid substitutions in the region studied had been selected when comparing the sequences from the three animals. This restricted sequence variation of GBV-B during acute hepatitis may explain the infrequent progression of the infection to a chronic stage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-186
Number of pages6
JournalVirus Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2008


  • Envelope 2
  • GB virus B
  • Hepatitis
  • Hypervariable region
  • Sequence variability


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