Zika Virus Plasmids

Infections Clone System

At a Glance

Researchers at Colorado State University have developed plasmids (pJW231 and pJW232) that offer an infections clone system as a critical tool to study ZIKV infection and disease.

Zika virus (ZIKV; family Flaviviridae, genus Flavivirus) is a rapidly expanding global pathogen that has been associated with severe clinical manifestations, including devastating neurological disease in infants. This ZIKV reverse genetics system is based on a 2015 isolate from Puerto Rico (strain PRVABC59). This infectious clone produces virus with in vitro and in vivo characteristics similar to those of the primary isolate, providing a critical tool to study ZIKV infection and disease.


Zika Virus Plasmids

pJW231 and pJW232 plasmids


  • Two-plasmid infectious clone system was created, from which infectious virus was rescued that replicates in human and mosquito cells with growth kinetics representative of wild-type ZIKV
  • pJW231 (Plasmid 1) – Encodes ZIKV 5’ end (1-3498)
  • pJW232 (Plasmid 2) – Encodes ZIKV 3’ end (3,109-10,809) and HDV Ribozyme
  • Infectious clone-derived virus initiated infection and transmission rates in Aedes aegyptimosquitoes comparable to those of the primary isolate and displayed similar pathogenesis in AG129 mice
Last Updated: November 2019

Brian J Geiss
Gregory D Ebel

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Steve Foster