IMR Press / FBL / Volume 14 / Issue 7 / DOI: 10.2741/3390

Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

Molecular characterization of tick-virus interactions
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1 NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Maclean Building, Crowmarsh Gifford, Wallingford, OX108BB, United Kingdom
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2009, 14(7), 2466–2483;
Published: 1 January 2009

All viruses infecting ticks (with one possible exception) are arboviruses; their life cycle depends on infection and replication in both tick and vertebrate host cells. Little is known of arbovirus-tick cell interactions even though tick-borne viruses spend most of their existence in ticks. A distinct selection pressure on tick-borne viruses is the intracellular process of bloodmeal digestion in ticks (contrasting with insects) This may explain the pronounced differences in surface structure of tick-borne and insect-borne orbiviruses. Some indications of molecular interactions can be extrapolated from vertebrate cells, such as utilisation of aggresome pathways. Although many (if not all) tick-borne viruses exploit the immunomodulatory effects of tick saliva on the vertebrate host, there is no evidence they interact directly with saliva molecules. However, the most fundamental question to address is the benign infection of arboviruses in tick cells compared with their cytopathic effect in vertebrate cells. As the tick proteome is unravelled, its interaction with the viral proteome should help explain the interactions between ticks and the many important viruses they transmit.

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