First Advisor

Kenneth Stedman

Date of Publication

Fall 12-23-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Biology






Archaebacteria, Viruses, Genomics, Viral genetics



Physical Description

1 online resource (x, 264 pages)


Viruses infecting the Archaea exhibit a tremendous amount of morphological and genetic diversity. This is especially true for crenarchaeal viruses from the family Fuselloviridae, which possess spindle-shaped capsids and genomes that harbor a great number of uncharacterized genes. The functions of these unidentified gene products are of interest as they have the potential to provide valuable insights into the fusellovirus infection cycle and archaeal viruses in general. In an effort to better characterize the genetic requirements of the Fuselloviridae, we have performed genetic and biochemical experiments using the best studied fusellovirus, Sulfolobus spindle-shaped virus 1 (SSV1).

A comprehensive genetic analysis of SSV1 was conducted using long inverse PCR and transposon mutagenesis. The results of this work illustrate that SSV1 is highly tolerant of mutagenesis. A robust protocol for the purification of recombinant VP2 protein from E. coli was developed and should be useful for future studies aimed at characterizing the biochemical and structural characteristics of this SSV1 structural protein. Finally, the first insights into a fusellovirus infection are presented and provide the framework for a detailed characterization of the fusellovirus infection cycle. The results and significance of this work are presented in the chapters that follow.


In Copyright. URI: This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).

Persistent Identifier

Included in

Virology Commons