Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Structure of the catalytic and antigenic sites in influenza virus neuraminidase


The catalytic sites of influenza virus neuraminidase are located on the upper corners of the box-shaped tetramer that forms the head of the molecule. Antigenic determinants form a nearly-continuous surface across the top of the monomer encircling the catalytic site. Approximately the same number of amino acid sequence changes occurred in these determinants between the years 1968 and 1975 as occurred in the antigenic sites of influenza virus haemagglutinin in the same period.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Get just this article for as long as you need it


Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout


  1. Varghese, J. N., Laver, W. G. & Colman, P. M. Nature 303, 35–40 (1983).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Drzeniek, R. Curr. Topics Microbiol. Immun. 59, 35–74 (1972).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Elleman, T. C., Azad, A. A. & Ward, C. W. Nucleic Acids Res. 10, 7005–7015 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Ward, C. W., Elleman, T. C. & Azad, A. A. Biochem. J. 207, 91–95 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Fields, S., Winter, G. & Brownlee, G. G. Nature 290, 213–217 (1981).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Hiti, A. L. & Nyak, D. P. J. Virol. 41, 730–734 (1982).

    CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  7. Markoff, L. & Lai, C.-J. Virology 119, 288–297 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Bentley, D. R. & Brownlee, G. G. Nucleic Acids Res. 10, 5033–5042 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Van Rompuy, L., Min-Jou, W., Huylebroeck, D. & Fiers, W. J. molec. Biol. 161, 1–11 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Shaw, M. W., Lamb, R. A., Erikson, B. W., Breidis, D. J. & Choppin, P. W. Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 79, 6817–6821 (1982).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Wright, C. S. J. molec. Biol. 141, 267–291 (1980).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Wilson, I. A., Skehel, J. J. & Wiley, D. C. Nature 289, 366–373 (1981).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Mountford, C. E. et al. Molec. Immun. 19, 811–816 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Kilbourne, E. D., Laver, W. G., Schulman, J. L. & Webster, R. G. J. Virol. 2, 281–288 (1968).

    CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  15. Schulman, J. L. in The Influenza Viruses and Influenza (ed. Kilbourne, E. D.) 373–393 (Academic, New York, 1975).

    Google Scholar 

  16. Laver, W. G., Air, G. M., Webster, R. G. & Markhoff, L. J. Virology 122, 450–460 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  17. Webster, R. G., Hinshaw, V. S. & Laver, W. G. Virology 117, 93–104 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. Laver, W. G., Air, G. M. & Webster, R. G. J. molec. Biol. 145, 339–361 (1981).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  19. Poljak, R. J. et al. Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 70, 3305–3310 (1973).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  20. Segal, D. M. et al. Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 71, 4298–4302 (1974).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  21. Matsushima, M. et al. J. molec. Biol. 121, 441–459 (1978).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  22. Wiley, D. C., Wilson, I. A. & Skehel, J. J. Nature 289, 373–378 (1981).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  23. Mountford, C. E., Holmes, K. T. & Hampson, A. W. Biochem. biophys. Res. Commun. 103, 469–474 (1982).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Jackson, D. C. & Webster, R. G. Virology 123, 69–77 (1982).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  25. Colman, P. M. et al. J. molec. Biol. 152, 609–614 (1981).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Colman, P., Varghese, J. & Laver, W. Structure of the catalytic and antigenic sites in influenza virus neuraminidase. Nature 303, 41–44 (1983).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing