Sequences within the gag gene of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) are important for efficient RNA encapsidation

Matthew T. Browning, Farah Mustafa, Russell D. Schmidt, Kathy A. Lew, Tahir A. Rizvi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)-based retroviral vector systems are being developed for human gene therapy. Consequently, it has become important to know the precise sequence requirements for the packaging of FIV genome so that such sequences can be eliminated from transfer vectors post-transduction for improved safety. Recently, we have shown that sequences both within the 5′-untranslated leader region (UTR) and the 5′-end of gag are required for efficient packaging and transduction of FIV-based vectors. However, the extent of gag sequence important in the encapsidation process is not clear as well as their relative contribution to packaging. In this study, using a biologically relevant packaging system, we demonstrate that at the most 100 bp of gag sequences are sufficient for efficient RNA packaging in conjunction with the 5′-UTR and no other sequences within the next 600 bp of gag exist that affect packaging. In addition, we show that sequences within gag do not simply act as spatial elements to stabilize other structural determinants of packaging located within the 5′-UTR, but are important in themselves for the encapsidation process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-209
Number of pages11
JournalVirus Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2003


  • Feline immunodeficiency virus
  • Human gene therapy
  • Packaging signal
  • RNA packaging
  • Retroviral vectors
  • gag

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Cancer Research


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