The Us9 gene is highly conserved among the alphaherpesviruses sequenced to date, yet its function remains unknown. In this report, we demonstrate that the pseudorabies virus (PRV) Us9 protein is present in infected cell lysates as several phosphorylated polypeptides ranging from 17 to 20 kDa. Synthesis is first detected at 6 h postinfection and is sensitive to the DNA synthesis inhibitor phosphonoacetic acid. Unlike the herpes simplex virus type 1 Us9 homolog, which was reported to be associated with nucleocapsids in the nuclei of infected cells (M. C. Frame, D. J. McGeoch, F. J. Rixon, A. C. Orr, and H. S. Marsden, Virology 150:321-332, 1986), PRV Us9 localizes to the secretory pathway (predominately to the Golgi apparatus) and not to the nucleus. By fusing the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) reporter molecule to the carboxy terminus of Us9, we demonstrated that Us9 not only is capable of targeting a Us9-EGFP fusion protein to the Golgi compartment but also is able to direct efficient incorporation of such chimeric molecules into infectious vital particles. Moreover, through protease digestion experiments with Us9-EGFP-containing viral particles, we demonstrated that the Us9 protein is inserted into the viral envelope as a type II, tail- anchored membrane protein.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science