Bioinformatics-based Identification of Proteins Expressed by Arthropod- Borne Viruses Transmitted By Aedes Aegypti Mosquito

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Aedes Aegypti Mosquito, Chikungunya, Dengue, Mayaro, Yellow Fever, Zika, Intrinsic Disorder Predisposition, Polarity Index Method® Profile.

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Background: The female Aedes aegypti mosquito is a vector of several arthropod-borne viruses, such as Mayaro, Dengue, Chikungunya, Yellow Fever, and Zika. These viruses cause the death of at least 600000 people a year and temporarily disable several million more around the world. Up to date, there are no effective prophylactic measures that would prevent the contact and bite of this arthropod and, therefore, its consequential contagion.

Objective: The objective of the present study was to search for the regularities of the proteins expressed by these five viruses, at residues level, and obtain a “bioinformatic fingerprint” to select them.

Methods: We used two bioinformatic systems, our in-house bioinformatic system named Polarity Index Method® (PIM®) supported at residues level, and the commonly used algorithm for the prediction of intrinsic disorder predisposition, PONDR® FIT. We applied both programs to the 29 proteins that express the five groups of arboviruses studied, and we calculated for each of them their Polarity Index Method® profile and their intrinsic disorder predisposition. This information was then compared with analogous information for other protein groups, such as proteins from bacteria, fungi, viruses, and cell-penetrating peptides from the UniProt database, and a set of intrinsically disordered proteins. Once the “fingerprint” of each group of arboviruses was obtained, these “fingerprints” were searched among the 559228 “reviewed” proteins from the UniProt database.

Results: In total, 1736 proteins were identified from the 559228 “reviewed” proteins from the UniProt database, with similar “PIM® profile” to the 29 mutated proteins that express the five groups of arboviruses.

Conclusion: We propose that the “PIM® profile” of characterization of proteins might be useful for the identification of proteins expressed by arthropod-borne viruses transmitted by Aedes aegypti mosquito.

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Current Proteomics, v. 18, issue 1, p. 81-94