, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 53-71

Functional organization of variola major and vaccinia virus genomes

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Comparison of the genomic organization of variola and vaccinia viruses has been carried out. Molecular factors of virulence of these viruses is the focus of this review. Possible roles of the genes of soluble cytokine receptors, complement control proteins, factors of virus replication, and dissemination in vivo for variola virus pathogenesis are discussed. The existence of “buffer” genes in the vaccinia virus genome is proposed.