Japanese scientists have discovered a new type of virus that is unlike any other and does not fit into modern ideas about these infectious agents, Science Alert reported.
The virus found in swine feces belongs to a previously unknown type of enterovirus G (EV-G) of the picornaviridae family (Picornaviridae).
It does not have structural proteins that form a viral particle. The virus, as a rule, consists of genetic material (DNA or RNA), which is enclosed in a protective protein coat - a capsid. However, in this particular virus, the genes encoding the proteins in the capsid are replaced with unknown genes.
Designated as EV-G type 2, this virus, unlike other enteroviruses, cannot independently penetrate the host cell. According to scientists, it uses another virus for this, which can 'borrow' structural proteins necessary for the spread of EV-G. Such an assistant may be the EV-G type 1.
Specialists plan to study the interaction process between both types of enteroviruses in order to understand the principles of EV-G type 2 reproduction.
Photo: Cynthia S. Goldsmith / Yiting Zhang / CDC