Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Karim Essani

Second Advisor

Dr. Todd J. Barkman

Third Advisor

Dr. Bruce Bejcek

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Robert R. Eversole


Frog virus 3 (FV3) is the type species member of the genus Ranavirus (family Iridoviridae ). To better understand the molecular mechanisms involved in the replication of FV3, including transcription of its highly methylated DNA genome, the complete nucleotide sequence of the FV3 genome has been determined. The FV3 genome is 105, 903 base pairs long excluding the terminal redundancy. The G+C content of FV3 genome is 55% and it encodes 98 non-overlappingpotential open reading frames (ORFs) containing 50 to 1293 amino acids. Eighty-four ORFs have significant homology to known proteins of other iridoviruses, whereas 14 are unique FV3 ORFs. Of these, 12 ORFs do not share homology to any known proteins and only two FV3 specific ORFs shared some degree ofhomology with other organisms. A microsatellite containing a stretch of 34 tandemly repeated CA dinucleotide in a non-coding region was detected. To-date, no such sequence has been reported in any animal virus. A set of overlapping reading frames (ORF 55R and 55L) has also been identified and shown to express both at the RNA and protein levels by RT-PCR and baculovirus expression system respectively. Both were classified as immediate-early genes and the functionof ORF 55L protein has been shown to be a DNA nuclease, and possible exonuclease activity for ORF 55R protein.


5th Advisor: Dr. Fred L. Homa

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access