Cowpox virus encodes a fifth member of the tumor necrosis factor receptor family: a soluble, secreted CD30 homologue.
Cowpox virus (Brighton Red strain) possesses one of the largest genomes in the Orthopoxvirus genus. Sequence analysis of a region of the genome that is type-specific for cowpox virus identified a gene, vCD30, encoding a soluble, secreted protein that is the fifth member of the tumor necrosis factor receptor family known to be encoded by cowpox virus. The vCD30 protein contains 110 aa, including a 21-residue signal peptide, a potential O-linked glycosylation site, and a 58-aa sequence sharing 51-59% identity with highly conserved extracellular segments of both mouse and human CD30. A vCD30Fc fusion protein binds CD153 (CD30 ligand) specifically, and it completely inhibits CD153/CD30 interactions. Although the functions of CD30 are not well understood, the existence of vCD30 suggests that the cellular receptor plays a significant role in normal immune responses. Viral inhibition of CD30 also lends support to the potential therapeutic value of targeting CD30 in human inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.
Panus, JF; Smith, CA; Ray, CA; Smith, TD; Patel, DD; Pickup, DJ
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