The human coronavirus 229E replicase gene encodes a protein, p66HEL, that contains a putative zinc finger structure linked to a putative superfamily (SF) 1 helicase. A histidine-tagged form of this protein, HEL, was expressed using baculovirus vectors in insect cells. The purified recombinant protein had in vitro ATPase activity that was strongly stimulated by poly(U), poly(dT), poly(C), and poly(dA), but not by poly(G). The recombinant protein also had both RNA and DNA duplex-unwinding activities with 5'-to-3' polarity. The DNA helicase activity of the enzyme preferentially unwound 5'-oligopyrimidine-tailed, partial-duplex substrates and required a tail length of at least 10 nucleotides for effective unwinding. The combined data suggest that the coronaviral SF1 helicase functionally differs from the previously characterized RNA virus SF2 helicases.
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2000|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology