Accessory proteins of SARS-CoV and other coronaviruses

Antiviral Res. 2014 Sep;109:97-109. doi: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2014.06.013. Epub 2014 Jul 1.


The huge RNA genome of SARS coronavirus comprises a number of open reading frames that code for a total of eight accessory proteins. Although none of these are essential for virus replication, some appear to have a role in virus pathogenesis. Notably, some SARS-CoV accessory proteins have been shown to modulate the interferon signaling pathways and the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. The structural information on these proteins is also limited, with only two (p7a and p9b) having their structures determined by X-ray crystallography. This review makes an attempt to summarize the published knowledge on SARS-CoV accessory proteins, with an emphasis on their involvement in virus-host interaction. The accessory proteins of other coronaviruses are also briefly discussed. This paper forms part of a series of invited articles in Antiviral Research on "From SARS to MERS: 10 years of research on highly pathogenic human coronaviruses" (see Introduction by Hilgenfeld and Peiris (2013)).

Keywords: Accessory proteins; Other coronaviruses; SARS-CoV; Structure and function.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Coronavirus / classification
  • Coronavirus / genetics
  • Coronavirus / metabolism
  • Coronavirus Infections / virology*
  • Humans
  • Open Reading Frames
  • SARS Virus / genetics
  • SARS Virus / metabolism*
  • Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins / genetics
  • Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins / metabolism*


  • Viral Regulatory and Accessory Proteins