Open reading frame (ORF) 126 (Bm126) of Bombyx mori nucleopolyhedrovirus (BmNPV) is not essential for viral replication, and two subtypes of this gene have been identified in China. The Bm126-SX subtype encodes a protein with a simple amino acid duplication/insertion relative to the Bm126-GD subtype; however, significant differences in the cytopathic effect and infectivity of viruses carrying these variant genes have been observed. To elucidate the cause of these differences, differential gene expression analysis was performed at the early stage of infection with viruses harbouring variants of Bm126. Differential expression was observed for 103, 209, and 313 host genes and 9, 44, and 67 viral genes in vGD126 samples relative to the control samples (vSX126) at 6, 12, and 24 h postinfection, respectively. These results indicated that the duplication/insertion in Bm126 altered the viral expression pattern. The differentially expressed host genes were found to be related to ribosome, spliceosome, and proteasome pathways, and several factors involved in signal transduction were also identified. The differential expression of these viral and host genes was confirmed by qPCR. This study indicates that the amino acid duplication/insertion in the Bm126 gene has a biological function related to the regulation of viral gene expression and serves as a basis for further characterization of Bm126 gene function.
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This work was funded in part by the National Science Foundation of China (31101766, 31670152), the Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20151321, BK20161365), and the Scientific Research Foundation for Returned Overseas Chinese Scholars, State Education Ministry (2015).
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
All authors have seen and agree with the contents of the manuscript.
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