Non-enveloped, round, T=1 icosahedral symmetry, 18-26 nm in diameter. The capsid consists of 60 copies of CP protein.
Linear, ssDNA genome of about 4 to 6 kb in size.
The genome is replicated through rolling-hairpin mechanism.
Host proteins transcribe the genome into mRNAs. Depending on the virus there can be one (Erythrovirus and Iteravirus), two (Densovirus and Brevidensovirus) or three (Dependovirus) promoters for mRNA transcription. Alternative splicing allows expression of both structural and non-structural proteins. Leaky scanning is used as well by densoviruses.
- Attachement to host receptors initiates clathrin-mediated endocytosis of the virion into the host cell.
- The virion penetrates into the cytoplasm via permeabilization of host endosomal membrane.
- Microtubular transport of the virion toward the nucleus.
- The viral ssDNA genome penetrates into the nucleus.
- The ssDNA is converted into dsDNA by cellular proteins.
- dsDNA transcription gives rise to viral mRNAs when host cell enters S phase and translated to produce viral proteins.
- Replication occurs through rolling-hairpin mechanism, with NS1 endonuclease binding covalently to the 5' genomic end.
- Individual ssDNA genomes are excised from replication concatemers by a process called junction resolution.
- These newly synthesized ssDNA can either
a) be converted to dsDNA and serve as a template for transcription/replication
b) be encapsidated to form new virions that are released by cell lysis.