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Virology DOI:10.1016/j.virol.2013.12.014

Genomic sequences of a low passage herpes simplex virus 2 clinical isolate and its plaque-purified derivative strain.

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsColgrove, R, Diaz, F, Newman, R, Saif, S, Shea, T, Young, S, Henn, M, Knipe, DM
Date Published2014/02/01

Herpes simplex virus 2 is an important human pathogen as the causative agent of genital herpes, neonatal herpes, and increased risk of HIV acquisition and transmission. Nevertheless, the only genomic sequence that has been completed is the attenuated HSV-2 HG52 laboratory strain. In this study we defined the genomic sequence of the HSV-2 SD90e low passage clinical isolate and a plaque-purified derivative, SD90-3P. We found minimal sequence differences between SD90e and SD90-3P. However, in comparisons with the HSV-2 HG52 reference genome sequence, the SD90e genome ORFs contained numerous point mutations, 13 insertions/deletions (indels), and 9 short compensatory frameshifts. The indels were true sequence differences, but the compensatory frameshifts were likely sequence errors in the original HG52 sequence. Because HG52 virus is less virulent than other HSV-2 strains and may not be representative of wildtype HSV-2 strains, we propose that the HSV-2 SD90e genome serve as the new HSV-2 reference genome.