The chicken anemia virus protein Apoptin is able to selectively induce apoptosis in transformed cells while leaving primary cells intact. The mechanism of selection is unknown. The product of the third ORF of PCV2 has high homology with the CAV protein Apoptin, and has two naturally-occurring isoform, PCV2a and PCV2b. PCV2b displays higher apoptotic ability over PCV2a, despite high homology between the two; there is a difference of two amino acids between PCV2b and PCV2a. A chimeric protein was generated featuring one distinct acid from each isoform. Apoptotic ability of this chimeric protein was assessed to determine the role of the differing amino acids. A clearer understanding of the PCV2 protein functionality in transformed cells may lead to therapeutic applications for cancer.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Major Qualifying Project
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Chemistry and Biochemistry