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pH-induced morphological changes of proteinaceous viral shells.

08:00 EDT 29th March 2019 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "pH-induced morphological changes of proteinaceous viral shells."

Changes in environmental pH can induce morphological changes in empty proteinaceous shells of bacteriophages in vitro that are very similar to changes occurring in viral capsids in vivo after encapsidation of DNA. These changes in capsid shape and size cannot be explained with a simple elastic model alone. We propose a new theoretical framework that combines the elasticity of thin icosahedral shells with the pH dependence of capsid charge distribution. Minimization of the sum of elastic and electrostatic free energies leads to equilibrium shapes of viral shells that depend on a single elastic parameter and the detailed configuration of the imbedded protein charges. Based on the in vitro shell reconstructions of bacteriophage HK97 we elucidate the details of how the reversible transition between Prohead II and Expansion Intermediate II states of the HK97 procapsid is induced by pH changes, as well as some other features of the bacteriophage maturation.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Scientific reports
ISSN: 2045-2322
Pages: 5341

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