Adenoviruses are members of the Adenoviridae family. They were first isolated in adenoid tissue-derived cell cultures in the 1950s, hence the name. These types of DNA viruses are classified according to 3 main capsid antigens: hexon, penton, and fiber.
Adenoviruses are very ubiquitous in humans and in a wide range of vertebrate hosts. More than 50 different adenoviral serotypes have been identified that cause various diseases in humans, including mild respiratory infections, cystitis, gastroenteritis, keratoconjunctivitis, and primary pneumonia.
These viruses are capable of infecting various organ systems, most infections are asymptomatic. They are often cultured from the pharynx and feces of asymptomatic children, and most adults have measurable anti-adenovirus antibody titers, signifying a prior infection.
Adenoviruses are medium-sized viruses and larger non-enveloped viruses (without an outer lipid bilayer) with a size of 90 to 100 nm. An adenovirus contains a double-stranded DNA genome within an icosahedral capsid. The surface of its capsid consists of 240 hexagons (each containing three identical proteins), 12 pentons sit at the vertices (each containing five protein chains).
A long fiber (made up of three identical chains) was located at each vertex to form a bulge at the end. Their genomes are linear, non-segmented double-stranded DNA, whose lengths range from 26 to 48 kbp, which means that adenoviruses can theoretically carry between 22 and 40 genes.
Adenovirus genomes have been well studied and can be easily modified for various applications in both academic and industrial programs, such as cytotoxicity of a specific cell line without affecting others and inducing lysis.
Adenoviruses are capable of replicating in the nucleus of host cells through the use of the replication machinery of the injected host cells. Two sets of virus-host cell interactions are involved in the entry of adenovirus host cells. First, entry was initiated by binding between the knob domain of the fiber protein and the host cell surface receptor. Then comes the second interaction, where a motif in the adenovirus penton-based protein interacts with an integrin molecule from the host cell. This coreceptor interaction achieves entry of adenovirus into the host cell.
After entry, the endosome acidifies and the capsid dissolves along with other changes. Viral DNA is released and enters the nucleus of host cells through the nuclear pore. Viral DNA then associates with histones and promotes viral gene expression. The life cycle of adenovirus is divided into two phases: the initial phase and the later phase. The initial phase focuses on the expression of non-structural regulatory proteins, while the later phase is responsible for the expression of the structural protein and the bundle of all genetic material produced by DNA replication.
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