Virology, Nebraska Center for



Feng Qu

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RNA silencing as a robust host defense mechanism against plant viruses is generally countered by virus-encoded silencing suppressors. This strategy is now increasingly recognized to be used by animal viruses as well. We present here an overview of the common features shared by some of the better studied plant viral silencing suppressors. We then briefly describe the characteristics of the few reported animal viral suppressors, notably their extraordinary ability of cross-kingdom suppression. We next discuss the basis for biased protection of viral RNA and subviral parasites by silencing suppressors, the link between movement and silencing suppression, the influence of temperature on the outcome of viral infection and the effect of viral silencing suppressors on the microRNA pathway.


Published in FEBS Letters 579:26 (October 31, 2005), pp. 5958–5964; doi 10.1016/j.febslet.2005.08.041 Copyright © 2005 Federation of European Biochemical Societies; published by Elsevier B.V. Used by permission.

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