Viral DNA polymerase scanning and the gymnastics of Sendai virus RNA synthesis

Virology. 2004 Jan 20;318(2):463-73. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2003.10.031.


mRNA synthesis from nonsegmented negative-strand RNA virus (NNV) genomes is unique in tht the genome RNA is embedded in an N protein assembly (the nucleocapsid) and the viral RNA polymerase does not dissociate from the template after release of each mRNA, but rather scans the genome RNA for the next gene-start site. A revised model for NNV RNA synthesis is presented, in which RNA polymerase scanning plays a prominent role. Polymerase scanning of the template is known to occur as the viral transcriptase negotiates gene junctions without falling off the template.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • DNA-Directed RNA Polymerases / chemistry
  • DNA-Directed RNA Polymerases / metabolism*
  • Nucleocapsid Proteins / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • RNA, Viral / biosynthesis*
  • Sendai virus / genetics*
  • Sendai virus / metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Vesicular stomatitis Indiana virus / genetics


  • Nucleocapsid Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA, Viral
  • DNA-Directed RNA Polymerases