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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2018-03-29
    Description: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the main cause of acute lower respiratory tract infection (ALRI) in children worldwide. Virus-host interactions affect the progression and prognosis of the infection. Autophagy plays important roles in virus-host interactions. Respiratory epithelial cells serve as the front line of host defense during RSV infection, However, it is still unclear how they interact with RSV. In this study, we found that RSV induced autophagy that favored RSV replication and exacerbated lung pathology in vivo . Mechanistically, RSV induced complete autophagy flux through reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase/mammalian target of rapamycin (AMPK-MTOR) signaling pathway in HEp-2 cells. Furthermore, we evaluated the functions of autophagy in RSV replication and found that RSV replication was increased in HEp-2 cells treated with rapamycin but decreased remarkably in cells treated with 3-methylademine (3-MA) or wortmannin. Knockdown key molecules in the autophagy pathway with short hairpinp RNA (shRNA) against autophagy-related gene 5 ( ATG5 ), autophagy-related gene 7 ( ATG7 ), or BECN1/Beclin 1 or treatment with ROS scavenger N-acetyl- l -cysteine (NAC) and AMPK inhibitor (compound C) suppressed RSV replication. 3-MA or sh ATG5/BECN1 significantly decreased cell viability and increased cell apoptosis at 48 hours postinfection (hpi). Blocking apoptosis with Z-VAD-FMK partially restored virus replication at 48 hpi. Those results provide strong evidence that autophagy may function as a proviral mechanism in a cell-intrinsic manner during RSV infection. IMPORTANCE An understanding of the mechanisms that respiratory syncytial virus utilizes to interact with respiratory epithelial cells is critical to the development of novel antiviral strategies. In this study, we found that RSV induces autophagy through a ROS-AMPK signaling axis, which in turn promotes viral infection. Autophagy favors RSV replication through blocking cell apoptosis at 48 hpi. Mechanistically, RSV induces mitophagy, which maintains mitochondrial homeostasis and therefore decreases cytochrome c release and apoptosis induction. This study provides a novel insight into this virus-host interaction, which may help to exploit new antiviral treatments targeting autophagy processes.
    Print ISSN: 0022-538X
    Electronic ISSN: 1098-5514
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2018-03-29
    Description: The equine infectious anemia virus (EIAV) attenuated vaccine was developed by long-term passaging of a field-isolated virulent strain in cross-species hosts, followed by successive cultivation in cells in vitro . To explore the molecular mechanism underlying the evolution of the EIAV attenuated vaccine, a systematic study focusing on long-terminal-repeat (LTR) variation in numerous virus strains ranging from virulent EIAV to attenuated EIAV was performed over time both in vitro and in vivo . Two hypervariable regions were identified within the U3 region in the enhancer region (EHR) and the negative regulatory element (NRE) and within the R region in the transcription start site (TSS) and the Tat-activating region (TAR). Among these sites, variation in the U3 region resulted in the formation of additional transcription factor binding sites; this variation of the in vitro -adapted strains was consistent with the loss of pathogenicity. Notably, the same LTR variation pattern was observed both in vitro and in vivo . Generally, the LTR variation in both the attenuated virus and the virulent strain fluctuated over time in vivo . Interestingly, the attenuated-virus-specific LTR variation was also detected in horses infected with the virulent strain, supporting the hypothesis that the evolution of an attenuated virus might have involved branching from EIAV quasispecies. This hypothesis was verified by phylogenetic analysis. The present systematic study examining the molecular evolution of attenuated EIAV from EIAV quasispecies may provide an informative model reflecting the evolution of similar lentiviruses. IMPORTANCE The attenuated EIAV vaccine was the first lentiviral vaccine used to successfully control for equine infectious anemia in China. This vaccine provides an important reference for studying the relationship between EIAV gene variation and changes in biological characteristics. Importantly, the vaccine provides a model for the investigation of lentiviral quasispecies evolution. This study followed the "natural" development of the attenuated EIAV vaccine by use of a systematic analysis of LTR evolution in vitro and in vivo . The results revealed that the increase in LTR variation with passaging was accompanied by a decrease in virulence, which indicated that LTR variability might parallel the attenuation of virulence. Interestingly, the attenuated-virus-specific LTR variation was also detected in virulent-strain-infected horses, a finding consistent with those of previous investigations of gp90 and S2 evolution. Therefore, we present a hypothesis that the evolution of the attenuated virus may involve branching from EIAV quasispecies present in vivo .
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    Electronic ISSN: 1098-5514
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2018-02-27
    Description: Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) infection in domestic cats is the smallest usable natural model for lentiviral infection studies. FLA-E*01801 was applied to FIV AIDS vaccine research. We determined the crystal structure of FLA-E*01801 complexed with a peptide derived from FIV (gag positions 40 to 48; RMANVSTGR [RMA9]). The A pocket of the FLA-E*01801 complex plays a valuable restrictive role in peptide binding. Mutation experiments and circular-dichroism (CD) spectroscopy revealed that peptides with Asp at the first position (P1) could not bind to FLA-E*01801. The crystal structure and in vitro refolding of the mutant FLA-E*01801 complex demonstrated that Glu 63 and Trp 167 in the A pocket play important roles in restricting P1D. The B pocket of the FLA-E*01801 complex accommodates M/T/A/V/I/L/S residues, whereas the negatively charged F pocket prefers R/K residues. Based on the peptide binding motif, 125 FLA-E*01801-restricted FIV nonapeptides (San Diego isolate) were identified. Our results provide the structural basis for peptide presentation by the FLA-E*01801 molecule, especially A pocket restriction on peptide binding, and identify the potential cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) epitope peptides of FIV presented by FLA-E*01801. These results will benefit both the reasonable design of FLA-E*01801-restricted CTL epitopes and the further development of the AIDS vaccine. IMPORTANCE Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a viral pathogen in cats, and this infection is the smallest usable natural model for lentivirus infection studies. To examine how FLA I presents FIV epitope peptides, we crystallized and solved the first classic feline major histocompatibility complex class I (MHC-I) molecular structure. Surprisingly, pocket A restricts peptide binding. Trp 167 blocks the left side of pocket A, causing P1D to conflict with Glu 63 . We also identified the FLA-E*01801 binding motif X (except D)-(M/T/A/V/I/L/S)-X-X-X-X-X-X-(R/K) based on structural and biochemical experiments. We identified 125 FLA-E*01801-restricted nonapeptides from FIV. These results are valuable for developing peptide-based FIV and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) vaccines and for studying how MHC-I molecules present peptides.
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    Electronic ISSN: 1098-5514
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2018-05-15
    Description: H7N9 virus has caused five infection waves since it emerged in 2013. The highest number of human cases was seen in wave 5; however, the underlying reasons have not been thoroughly elucidated. In this study, the geographical distribution, phylogeny, and genetic evolution of 240 H7N9 viruses in wave 5, including 35 new isolates from patients and poultry in nine provinces, were comprehensively analyzed together with strains from first four waves. Geographical distribution analysis indicated that the newly emerging highly pathogenic (HP) and low-pathogenicity (LP) H7N9 viruses were cocirculating, causing human and poultry infections across China. Genetic analysis indicated that dynamic reassortment of the internal genes among LP-H7N9/H9N2/H6Ny and HP-H7N9, as well as of the surface genes, between the Yangtze and Pearl River Delta lineages resulted in at least 36 genotypes, with three major genotypes (G1 [A/chicken/Jiangsu/SC537/2013-like], G3 [A/Chicken/Zhongshan/ZS/2017-like], and G11 [A/Anhui/40094/2015-like]). The HP-H7N9 genotype likely evolved from G1 LP-H7N9 by the insertion of a KRTA motif at the cleavage site (CS) and then evolved into 15 genotypes with four different CS motifs, including PKG KRTA R/G, PKG KRIA R/G, PKR KRAA R/G, and PKR KRTA R/G. Approximately 46% (28/61) of HP strains belonged to G3. Importantly, neuraminidase (NA) inhibitor (NAI) resistance (R292K in NA) and mammalian adaptation (e.g., E627K and A588V in PB2) mutations were found in a few non-human-derived HP-H7N9 strains. In summary, the enhanced prevalence and diverse genetic characteristics that occurred with mammalian-adapted and NAI-resistant mutations may have contributed to increased numbers of human infections in wave 5. IMPORTANCE The highest numbers of human H7N9 infections were observed during wave 5 from October 2016 to September 2017. Our results showed that HP-H7N9 and LP-H7N9 had spread virtually throughout China and underwent dynamic reassortment with different subtypes (H7N9/H9N2 and H6Ny) and lineages (Yangtze and Pearl River Delta lineages), resulting in totals of 36 and 3 major genotypes, respectively. Notably, the NAI drug-resistant (R292K in NA) and mammalian-adapted (e.g., E627K in PB2) mutations were found in HP-H7N9 not only from human isolates but also from poultry and environmental isolates, indicating increased risks for human infections. The broad dissemination of LP- and HP-H7N9 with high levels of genetic diversity and host adaptation and drug-resistant mutations likely accounted for the sharp increases in the number of human infections during wave 5. Therefore, more strategies are needed against the further spread and damage of H7N9 in the world.
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    Electronic ISSN: 1098-5514
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-04-14
    Description: Movement of macromolecules between the cytoplasm and the nucleus occurs through the nuclear pore complex (NPC). Karyopherins comprise a family of soluble transport factors facilitating the nucleocytoplasmic translocation of proteins through the NPC. In this study, we found that karyopherin α6 (KPNA6; also known as importin α7) was required for the optimal replication of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) and Zika virus (ZIKV), which are positive-sense, single-stranded RNA viruses replicating in the cytoplasm. The KPNA6 protein level in virus-infected cells was much higher than that in mock-infected controls, whereas the KPNA6 transcript remains stable. Viral infection blocked the ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation of KPNA6, which led to an extension of the KPNA6 half-life and the elevation of the KPNA6 level in comparison to mock-infected cells. PRRSV nsp12 protein induced KPNA6 stabilization. KPNA6 silencing was detrimental to the replication of PRRSV, and KPNA6 knockout impaired ZIKV replication. Moreover, KPNA6 knockout blocked the nuclear translocation of PRRSV nsp1β but had a minimal effect on two other PRRSV proteins with nuclear localization. Exogenous restitution of KPNA6 expression in the KPNA6-knockout cells results in restoration of the nuclear translocation of PRRSV nsp1β and the replication of ZIKV. These results indicate that KPNA6 is an important cellular factor for the replication of PRRSV and ZIKV. IMPORTANCE Positive-sense, single-stranded RNA (+ssRNA) viruses replicate in the cytoplasm of infected cells. The roles of transport factors in the nucleocytoplasmic trafficking system for the replication of +ssRNA viruses are not known. In this study, we discovered that PRRSV and ZIKV viruses needed karyopherin α6 (KPNA6), one of the transport factors, to enhance the virus replication. Our data showed that viral infection induced an elevation of the KPNA6 protein level due to an extension of the KPNA6 half-life via viral interference of the ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation of KPNA6. Notably, KPNA6 silencing or knockout dramatically reduced the replication of PRRSV and ZIKV. PRRSV nsp1β depended on KPNA6 to translocate into the nucleus. In addition, exogenous restitution of KPNA6 expression in KPNA6-knockout cells led to the restoration of nsp1β nuclear translocation and ZIKV replication. These results reveal a new aspect in the virus-cell interaction and may facilitate the development of novel antiviral therapeutics.
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    Topics: Medicine
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