Browsing by Subject "tick-borne encephalitis virus"

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  • Laaksonen, Maija; Sajanti, Eeva; Sormunen, Jani J.; Penttinen, Ritva; Hanninen, Jari; Ruohomaki, Kai; Saaksjarvi, Ilari; Vesterinen, Eero J.; Vuorinen, Ilppo; Hytonen, Jukka; Klemola, Tero (2017)
    A national crowdsourcing-based tick collection campaign was organized in 2015 with the objective of producing novel data on tick distribution and tick-borne pathogens in Finland. Nearly 20 000 Ixodes ticks were collected. The collected material revealed the nationwide distribution of I. persulcatus for the first time and a shift northwards in the distribution of I. ricinus in Finland. A subset of 2038 tick samples containing both species was screened for Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (the prevalence was 14.2% for I. ricinus and 19.8% for I. persulcatus), B. miyamotoi (0.2% and 0.4%, respectively) and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV; 0.2% and 3.0%, respectively). We also report new risk areas for TBEV in Finland and, for the first time, the presence of B. miyamotoi in ticks from mainland Finland. Most importantly, our study demonstrates the overwhelming power of citizen science in accomplishing a collection effort that would have been impossible with the scientific community alone.
  • Pulkkinen, Lauri I. A.; Barrass, Sarah; Domanska, Ausra; Overby, Anna K.; Anastasina, Maria; Butcher, Sarah J. (2022)
    Tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) is a pathogenic, enveloped, positive-stranded RNA virus in the family Flaviviridae. Structural studies of flavivirus virions have primarily focused on mosquito-borne species, with only one cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) structure of a tick-borne species published. Here, we present a 3.3 angstrom cryo-EM structure of the TBEV virion of the Kuutsalo-14 isolate, confirming the overall organisation of the virus. We observe conformational switching of the peripheral and transmembrane helices of M protein, which can explain the quasi-equivalent packing of the viral proteins and highlights their importance in stabilising membrane protein arrangement in the virion. The residues responsible for M protein interactions are highly conserved in TBEV but not in the structurally studied Hypr strain, nor in mosquito-borne flaviviruses. These interactions may compensate for the lower number of hydrogen bonds between E proteins in TBEV compared to the mosquito-borne flaviviruses. The structure reveals two lipids bound in the E protein which are important for virus assembly. The lipid pockets are comparable to those recently described in mosquito-borne Zika, Spondweni, Dengue, and Usutu viruses. Our results thus advance the understanding of tick-borne flavivirus architecture and virion-stabilising interactions.
  • Pulkkinen, Lauri I. A.; Butcher, Sarah J.; Anastasina, Maria (2018)
    Tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) is a growing health concern. It causes a severe disease that can lead to permanent neurological complications or death and the incidence of TBEV infections is constantly rising. Our understanding of TBEV's structure lags behind that of other flaviviruses, but has advanced recently with the publication of a high-resolution structure of the TBEV virion. The gaps in our knowledge include: aspects of receptor binding, replication and virus assembly. Furthermore, TBEV has mostly been studied in mammalian systems, even though the virus' interaction with its tick hosts is a central part of its life cycle. Elucidating these aspects of TBEV biology are crucial for the development of TBEV antivirals, as well as the improvement of diagnostics. In this review, we summarise the current structural knowledge on TBEV, bringing attention to the current gaps in our understanding, and propose further research that is needed to truly understand the structural-functional relationship of the virus and its hosts.