Interference of the life cycle of grouper nervous necrosis virus (GNNV), a member of the Nodaviridae, genus Betanodavirus, by snakehead retrovirus (SnRV) has been studied in vitro. SGF-1, a new fish cell line that is persistently infected with SnRV, was induced by inoculating SnRV into the grouper fin cell line GF-1. Culture supernatants and cell pellets from both GNNV-infected SGF-1 and GF-1 cells were collected and employed for virus productivity analysis. The yields of GNNV RNA and capsid protein in GNNV-infected SGF-1 cells were similar to those in GNNV-infected GF-1 cells. However, when GF-1 cells were used for titration, the titre of the culture supernatant from GNNV-infected SGF-1 cells was much higher than that from GNNV-infected GF-1 cells. The titration result suggested that SnRV enhanced the infection or cytopathic effect (CPE) of GNNV during GNNV and SnRV coinfection of the GF-1 cell titration system, although SnRV cannot induce any CPE in GF-1 cells alone, nor can it increase the yield of GNNV after GNNV superinfection of SGF-1 cells. Moreover, GNNV cDNA was detected in both the pellet and the supernatant from GNNV-infected SGF-1 cells. This result indicated that SnRV reverse-transcribed the GNNV single-stranded genomic RNA into cDNA during GNNV superinfection of SGF-1 cells and created a new cDNA stage in the life cycle of the fish nodavirus.
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