Synonymous VirusGenome Recoding as a Tool to Impact Viral Fitness

Synonymous VirusGenome Recoding as a Tool to Impact Viral Fitness

Online publication: 29/11/2015 Printed publication: 1 February 2016 Journal: Trends in Microbiology


Synthetic genome recoding is a novel method of generating viruses with altered phenotypes, whereby many synonymous mutations are introduced into the protein coding region of the virus genome without altering the encoded proteins. Virus genome recoding with large numbers of slightly deleterious mutations has produced attenuated forms of several RNA viruses. Virus genome recoding can also aid in investigating virus interactions with innate immune responses, identifying functional virus genome structures, strategically ameliorating cis-inhibitory signaling sequences related to complex viral functions, to unravel the relevance of codon usage for the temporal regulation of viral gene expression and improving our knowledge of virus mutational robustness and adaptability. The present review discusses the impacts of synonymous genomerecoding with regard to expanding our comprehension of virus biology, and the development of new and better therapeutic strategies.

Authors: Martinez MA, Jordan-Paiz A, Franco S and Nevot M.

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