Adenovirus Capsid Proteins
John J. Rux and Roger M. Burnett
Since Rowe et al1 first isolated adenovirus from human adenoid cells, more than 100 different species have been identified from various mammals. The family is characterized by the distinctive architecture of the virion, or virus particle, which is formed from a well defined set of structural proteins. Human adenoviruses, which form the most studied group, cause a variety of diseases ranging in severity from respiratory infections and conjunctivitis to the severe enteric dysentery that is a leading cause of death in Third World infants. Most human adults have experienced the mild respiratory infections due to the prototypical type 2 adenovirus (Ad2) or the related Ad5. In this chapter, the focus will be on describing the adenovirus capsid in terms of its overall architecture and its individual proteins. The relationship between the structural and biological properties of adenovirus will be discussed.