Organization and expression of calicivirus genes

J Infect Dis. 2000 May;181 Suppl 2:S309-16. doi: 10.1086/315575.


The application of molecular techniques to the characterization of caliciviruses has resulted in an extensive database of sequence information. This information has led to the identification of 4 distinct genera. The human enteric caliciviruses have been assigned to 2 of these genera. This division is reflected not only in sequence diversity but in a fundamental difference in genome organization. Complete genome sequences are now available for 5 enteric caliciviruses and demonstrate that human and animal enteric caliciviruses are phylogenetically closely related. Currently, there is no cell culture system for the human viruses; therefore, studies have relied on heterologous expression and in vitro systems. These studies have shown that in both human and animal viruses the viral nonstructural proteins are produced from a polyprotein precursor that is cleaved by a single viral protease. The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the current knowledge of genome structure and gene expression in the enteric caliciviruses.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caliciviridae / genetics*
  • Capsid / metabolism
  • Gene Expression
  • Genome, Viral*
  • Humans
  • Norwalk virus / genetics*
  • Viral Proteins / metabolism


  • Viral Proteins