No evidence of a death-like function for species B1 human adenovirus type 3 E3-9K during A549 cell line infection

Kathryn M. Frietze, Samuel K. Campos, Adriana E. Kajon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: Subspecies B1 human adenoviruses (HAdV-B1) are prevalent respiratory pathogens. Compared to their species C (HAdV-C) counterparts, relatively little work has been devoted to the characterization of their unique molecular biology. The early region 3 (E3) transcription unit is an interesting target for future efforts because of its species-specific diversity in genetic content among adenoviruses. This diversity is particularly significant for the subset of E3-encoded products that are membrane glycoproteins and may account for the distinct pathobiology of the different human adenovirus species. In order to understand the role of HAdV-B-specific genes in viral pathogenesis, we initiated the characterization of unique E3 genes. As a continuation of our efforts to define the function encoded in the highly polymorphic ORF E3-10.9K and testing the hypothesis that the E3-10.9K protein orthologs with a hydrophobic domain contribute to the efficient release of viral progeny, we generated HAdV-3 mutant viruses unable to express E3-10.9K ortholog E3-9K and examined their ability to grow, disseminate, and egress in cell culture. Results: No differences were observed in the kinetics of infected cell death, and virus progeny release or in the plaque size and dissemination phenotypes between cells infected with HAdV-3 E3-9K mutants or the parental virus. The ectopic expression of E3-10.9K orthologs with a hydrophobic domain did not compromise cell viability. Conclusions: Our data show that despite the remarkable similarities with HAdV-C E3-11.6K, HAdV-B1 ORF E3-10.9K does not encode a product with a death-like biological activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number429
JournalBMC research notes
StatePublished - 2012


  • Adenovirus
  • E3 region
  • Genetic polymorphism
  • Virus egress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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