Enveloped, brick-shaped about 320x250x200nm. Two distinct infectious virus particles exists: the intracellular mature virus (IMV) and the extracellular enveloped virus (EEV).


Linear, dsDNA genome about 190kb. The linear genome is flanked by inverted terminal repeat (ITR) sequences which are covalently-closed at their extremities.
Molluscum contagiosum virus strain subtype 1 genome at Poxvirus Bioinformatics Ressource center




  1. Attachement of the viral proteins to host glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) mediates endocytosis of the virus into the host cell.
  2. Fusion with the plasma membrane to release the core into the host cytoplasm.
  3. Early phase: early genes are transcribed in the cytoplasm by viral RNA polymerase. Early expression begins at 30 minutes post-infection.
  4. Core is completely uncoated as early expression ends, viral genome is now free in the cytoplasm.
  5. Intermediate phase: Intermediate genes are expressed, triggering genomic DNA replication at approximately 100 minutes post-infection.
  6. Late phase: Late genes are expressed from 140 min to 48 hours post-infection, producing all structural proteins.
  7. Assembly of progeny virions starts in cytoplasmic viral factories, producing an spherical immature particle. This virus particle matures into brick-shaped intracellular mature virion (IMV).
  8. IMV virion can be released upon cell lysis, or can acquire a second double membrane from trans-Golgi and bud as external enveloped virion (EEV).

Host-virus interaction

Apoptosis modulation

Molluscipoxviruses encode a viral FLICE-inhibitory protein (v-FLIP) that prevents apoptosis induced by death receptors .

NF-kappa-B modulation

MC159 protein from the molluscum contagiosum inhibits NF-kappa-B activation by interacting with the IkB kinase complex .

Matching UniProtKB/Swiss-Prot entries

19 entries grouped by strain (browse by keywords)

18 entries

Molluscum contagiosum virus subtype 1 (MOCV) (MCVI) reference strain

MC148_MCV1 Chemokine-like protein MC148
RP07_MCV1 DNA-directed RNA polymerase 7 kDa subunit (EC
MC007_MCV1 Protein MC007
NTP1_MCV1 Nucleoside triphosphatase I (EC (NPH-I) (Nucleoside triphosphate phosphohydrolase I) (NPH ...
MP44_MCV1 Probable metalloendopeptidase G1-type (EC 3.4.24.-)
PAP1_MCV1 Poly(A) polymerase catalytic subunit (EC (Poly(A) polymerase large subunit) (PAP-L)
A28_MCV1 Envelope protein A28 homolog (Protein MC134)
ETF2_MCV1 Early transcription factor 82 kDa subunit (ETF large subunit)
F13_MCV1 Envelope protein F13 homolog (43 kDa protein) (p43K)
CFLA_MCV1 Viral CASP8 and FADD-like apoptosis regulator (v-CFLAR) (Viral FLICE-inhibitory protein) (v-FLIP)
MC014_MCV1 Protein MC014
GPX_MCV1 Glutathione peroxidase (GPx) (GSHPx) (EC
ETF1_MCV1 Early transcription factor 70 kDa subunit (EC 3.6.4.-) (ATP-dependent helicase VETFS) (ETF small ...
MC132_MCV1 Protein MC132
MC163_MCV1 Apoptosis regulator MC163R
MC005_MCV1 Protein MC005
MC160_MCV1 Protein MC160
NPH2_MCV1 RNA helicase NPH-II (EC (Nucleoside triphosphatase II) (NTPase II) (Nucleoside ...

1 entry

Molluscum contagiosum virus subtype 2 (MOCV) (MCVII)

F13_MCV2 Envelope protein F13 homolog (43 kDa protein) (p43K)