In vitro fidelity of the prototype primate foamy virus (PFV) RT compared to HIV-1 RT

Virology. 2007 Oct 25;367(2):253-64. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2007.05.034. Epub 2007 Jul 12.


We compared the in vitro fidelity of wild-type human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1) reverse transcriptase (RT) and the prototype foamy virus (PFV) RT. Both enzymes had similar error rates for single nucleotide substitutions; however, PFV RT did not appear to make errors at specific hotspots, like HIV-1 RT. In addition, PFV RT made more deletions and insertions than HIV-1 RT. Although the majority of the missense errors made by HIV-1 RT and PFV RT are different, relatively few of the mutations caused by either enzyme can be explained by a misalignment/slippage mechanism. We suggest that the higher polymerase activity of PFV RT could contribute to the ability of the enzyme to jump to the same or a different template.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Deoxyribonucleotides / metabolism
  • HIV Reverse Transcriptase / genetics
  • HIV Reverse Transcriptase / metabolism*
  • HIV-1 / enzymology
  • HIV-1 / genetics
  • HIV-1 / metabolism
  • Mutation*
  • Primates
  • RNA, Viral / genetics*
  • RNA, Viral / metabolism
  • Spumavirus / enzymology
  • Spumavirus / genetics
  • Spumavirus / metabolism
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


  • Deoxyribonucleotides
  • RNA, Viral
  • HIV Reverse Transcriptase