Intracellular localization of Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF) virus glycoproteins.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever virus (CCHFV), a member of the genus Nairovirus, family Bunyaviridae, is a tick-borne pathogen causing severe disease in humans. To better understand the CCHFV life cycle and explore potential intervention strategies, we studied the biosynthesis and intracellular targeting of the glycoproteins, which are encoded by the M genome segment. RESULTS: Following determination of the complete genome sequence of the CCHFV reference strain IbAr10200, we generated expression plasmids for the individual expression of the glycoproteins GN and GC, using CMV- and chicken beta-actin-driven promoters. The cellular localization of recombinantly expressed CCHFV glycoproteins was compared to authentic glycoproteins expressed during virus infection using indirect immunofluorescence assays, subcellular fractionation/western blot assays and confocal microscopy. To further elucidate potential intracellular targeting/retention signals of the two glycoproteins, GFP-fusion proteins containing different parts of the CCHFV glycoprotein were analyzed for their intracellular targeting. The N-terminal glycoprotein GN localized to the Golgi complex, a process mediated by retention/targeting signal(s) in the cytoplasmic domain and ectodomain of this protein. In contrast, the C-terminal glycoprotein GC remained in the endoplasmic reticulum but could be rescued into the Golgi complex by co-expression of GN. CONCLUSION: The data are consistent with the intracellular targeting of most bunyavirus glycoproteins and support the general model for assembly and budding of bunyavirus particles in the Golgi compartment.
Project description:Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus is a tick-borne bunyavirus of the Nairovirus genus that causes hemorrhagic fever in humans with high case fatality. Here, we report the development of subunit vaccines and their efficacy in signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1) knockout mice. Ectodomains of the structural glycoproteins Gn and Gc were produced using a Drosophila insect cell-based expression system. A single vaccination of STAT129 mice with adjuvanted Gn or Gc ectodomains induced neutralizing antibody responses, which were boosted by a second vaccination. Despite these antibody responses, mice were not protected from a CCHFV challenge infection. These results suggest that neutralizing antibodies against CCHFV do not correlate with protection of STAT1 knockout mice.
Project description:Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is an often lethal, acute inflammatory illness that affects a large geographic area. The disease is caused by infection with CCHF virus (CCHFV), a nairovirus from the Bunyaviridae family. Basic research on CCHFV has been severely hampered by biosafety requirements and lack of available strains and molecular tools. We report the development of a CCHF transcription- and entry-competent virus-like particle (tecVLP) system that can be used to study cell entry and viral transcription/replication over a broad dynamic range (~4 orders of magnitude). The tecVLPs are morphologically similar to authentic CCHFV. Incubation of immortalized and primary human cells with tecVLPs results in a strong reporter signal that is sensitive to treatment with neutralizing monoclonal antibodies and by small molecule inhibitors of CCHFV. We used glycoproteins and minigenomes from divergent CCHFV strains to generate tecVLPs, and in doing so, we identified a monoclonal antibody that can prevent cell entry of tecVLPs containing glycoproteins from 3 pathogenic CCHFV strains. In addition, our data suggest that different glycoprotein moieties confer different cellular entry efficiencies, and that glycoproteins from the commonly used strain IbAr10200 have up to 100-fold lower ability to enter primary human cells compared to glycoproteins from pathogenic CCHFV strains.
Project description:Despite the serious public health impact of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF), the efficacy of antivirals targeting the causative agent, CCHF virus (CCHFV), remains debatable. Neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) targeting the CCHFV glycoprotein Gc have been reported to protect mice against challenge with the prototype CCHFV strain, IbAr10200. However, due to extensive sequence diversity of CCHFV glycoproteins, it is unknown whether these MAbs neutralize other CCHFV strains. We initially used a CCHF virus-like particle (VLP) system to generate 11 VLP moieties, each possessing a glycoprotein from a genetically diverse CCHFV strain isolated in either Africa, Asia, the Middle East, or southeastern Europe. We used these VLPs in biosafety level 2 conditions to efficiently screen MAb cross-neutralization potency. Of the 16 MAbs tested, 3 (8A1, 11E7, and 30F7) demonstrated cross-neutralization activity with most CCHF VLPs, with 8A1 neutralizing all VLPs tested. Although binding studies suggest that none of the MAbs compete for the same epitope, combining 11E7, 30F7, or both 11E7 and 30F7 with 8A1 had no additive effect on increasing neutralization in this system. To confirm our findings from the VLP system, the 3 MAbs capable of strain cross-neutralization were confirmed to effectively neutralize 5 diverse CCHFV strains in vitro. Passaging CCHFV strains in the presence of sub-neutralizing concentrations of MAbs did not generate escape mutants resistant to subsequent neutralization. This study demonstrates the utility of the VLP system for screening neutralizing MAbs against multiple CCHFV strains, and provides the first evidence that a single MAb can effectively neutralize a number of diverse CCHFV strains in vitro, which may lead to development of future CCHF therapeutics.
Project description:The membrane glycoproteins (Gn and Gc) of Bunyamwera virus (BUN; family Bunyaviridae) accumulate in the Golgi complex, where virion maturation occurs. The Golgi targeting and retention signal has previously been shown to reside within the Gn protein. A series of truncated Gn and glycoprotein precursor cDNAs were constructed by progressively deleting the coding region of the transmembrane domain (TMD) and the cytoplasmic tail. We also constructed chimeric proteins of BUN Gc, enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), and human respiratory syncytial virus (HRSV) fusion (F) protein that contain the Gn TMD with various lengths of its adjacent cytoplasmic tails. The subcellular localization of mutated BUN glycoproteins and chimeric proteins was investigated by double-staining immunofluorescence with antibodies against BUN glycoproteins or the HRSV F protein and with antibodies specific for the Golgi complex. The results revealed that Gn and all truncated Gn proteins that contained the intact TMD (residues 206 to 224) were able to translocate to the Golgi complex and also rescued the Gc protein, which is retained in the endoplasmic reticulum when expressed alone, to this organelle. The rescued Gc proteins acquired endo-beta-N-acetylglucosaminidase H resistance. The Gn TMD could also target chimeric EGFP to the Golgi and retain the F protein, which is characteristically expressed on the surface of HRSV-infected cells, in the Golgi. However, chimeric BUN Gc did not translocate to the Golgi, suggesting that an interaction with Gn is involved in Golgi retention of the Gc protein. Collectively, these data demonstrate that the Golgi targeting and retention signal of BUN glycoproteins resides in the TMD of the Gn protein.
Project description:Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV), a tick-borne bunyavirus, can cause a life-threatening hemorrhagic syndrome in humans but not in its animal host. The virus is widely distributed throughout southeastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. Disease management has proven difficult and there are no broadly licensed vaccines or therapeutics. Recombinant vesicular stomatitis viruses (rVSV) expressing foreign glycoproteins (GP) have shown promise as experimental vaccines for several viral hemorrhagic fevers. Here, we developed and assessed a replication competent rVSV vector expressing the CCHFV glycoprotein precursor (GPC), which encodes CCHFV structural glycoproteins. This construct drives strong expression of CCHFV-GP, in vitro. Using these vectors, we vaccinated STAT-1 knock-out mice, an animal model for CCHFV. The vector was tolerated and 100% efficacious against challenge from a clinical strain of CCHFV. Anti-CCHFV-GP IgG and neutralizing antibody titers were observed in surviving animals. This study demonstrates that a rVSV expressing only the CCHFV-GP has the potential to serve as a replication competent vaccine platform against CCHF infections.
Project description:Hantavirus assembly and budding are governed by the surface glycoproteins Gn and Gc. In this study, we investigated the glycoproteins of Puumala, the most abundant Hantavirus species in Europe, using fluorescently labeled wild-type constructs and cytoplasmic tail (CT) mutants. We analyzed their intracellular distribution, co-localization and oligomerization, applying comprehensive live, single-cell fluorescence techniques, including confocal microscopy, imaging flow cytometry, anisotropy imaging and Number&Brightness analysis. We demonstrate that Gc is significantly enriched in the Golgi apparatus in absence of other viral components, while Gn is mainly restricted to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Importantly, upon co-expression both glycoproteins were found in the Golgi apparatus. Furthermore, we show that an intact CT of Gc is necessary for efficient Golgi localization, while the CT of Gn influences protein stability. Finally, we found that Gn assembles into higher-order homo-oligomers, mainly dimers and tetramers, in the ER while Gc was present as mixture of monomers and dimers within the Golgi apparatus. Our findings suggest that PUUV Gc is the driving factor of the targeting of Gc and Gn to the Golgi region, while Gn possesses a significantly stronger self-association potential.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV) is a member of the nairovirus, a genus in the Bunyaviridae family, which causes a life threatening disease in human. Currently, there is no vaccine against CCHFV and detailed structural analysis of CCHFV proteins remains undefined. The CCHFV M RNA segment encodes two viral surface glycoproteins known as Gn and Gc. Viral glycoproteins can be considered as key targets for vaccine development. OBJECTIVES:The current study aimed to investigate structural bioinformatics of CCHFV Gn protein and design a construct to make a recombinant bacmid to express by baculovirus system. MATERIALS AND METHODS:To express the Gn protein in insect cells that can be used as antigen in animal model vaccine studies. Bioinformatic analysis of CCHFV Gn protein was performed and designed a construct and cloned into pFastBacHTb vector and a recombinant Gn-bacmid was generated by Bac to Bac system. RESULTS:Primary, secondary, and 3D structure of CCHFV Gn were obtained and PCR reaction with M13 forward and reverse primers confirmed the generation of recombinant bacmid DNA harboring Gn coding region under polyhedron promoter. CONCLUSIONS:Characterization of the detailed structure of CCHFV Gn by bioinformatics software provides the basis for development of new experiments and construction of a recombinant bacmid harboring CCHFV Gn, which is valuable for designing a recombinant vaccine against deadly pathogens like CCHFV.
Project description:The <i>Bunyavirales</i> order accommodates related viruses (bunyaviruses) with segmented, linear, single-stranded, negative- or ambi-sense RNA genomes. Their glycoproteins form capsomeric projections or spikes on the virion surface and play a crucial role in virus entry, assembly, morphogenesis. Bunyavirus glycoproteins are encoded by a single RNA segment as a polyprotein precursor that is co- and post-translationally cleaved by host cell enzymes to yield two mature glycoproteins, Gn and Gc (or GP1 and GP2 in arenaviruses). These glycoproteins undergo extensive N-linked glycosylation and despite their cleavage, remain associated to the virion to form an integral transmembrane glycoprotein complex. This review summarizes recent advances in our understanding of the molecular biology of bunyavirus glycoproteins, including their processing, structure, and known interactions with host factors that facilitate cell entry.
Project description:Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a widespread zoonotic viral disease, caused by a tick-born virus Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (CCHFV). This disease is endemic in Middle East, Asia, Africa and South-Eastern Europe with the mortality rate of 5-30%. CCHFV genome is composed of three segments: large, medium and small segments. M segment encodes a polyprotein (glycoprotein) so called glycoprotein N (Gn) which is considered as a potential druggable target for the effective therapy of CCHF. The complete structure of Gn is still not characterized. The aim of the current study is to predict the complete three-dimensional (3D-) structure of CCHFV Gn protein via threading-based modeling and investigate the residues crucial for binding with CCHFV envelop. The developed model displayed excellent stereo-chemical and geometrical properties. Subsequently structure based virtual screening (SBVS) was applied to discover novel inhibitors of Gn protein. A library of >?1300 anti-virals was selected from PubChem database and directed to the predicted binding site of Gn. The SBVS results led to the identification of thirty-seven compounds that inhibit the protein in computational analysis. Those 37 hits were subject to pharmacokinetic profiling which demonstrated that 30/37 compound possess safer pharmacokinetic properties. Thus, by specifically targeting Gn, less toxic and more potent inhibitors of CCHFV were identified in silico.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The genus Nairovirus in the family Bunyaviridae contains 34 tick-borne viruses classified into seven serogroups. Hazara virus (HAZV) belongs to the Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) serogroup that also includes CCHF virus (CCHFV) a major pathogen for humans. HAZV is an interesting model to study CCHFV due to a close serological and phylogenetical relationship and a classification which allows handling in a BSL2 laboratory. Nairoviruses are characterized by a tripartite negative-sense single stranded RNA genome (named L, M and S segments) that encode the RNA polymerase, the Gn-Gc glycoproteins and the nucleoprotein (NP), respectively. Currently, there are neither vaccines nor effective therapies for the treatment of any bunyavirus infection in humans. In this study we report, for the first time, the use of RNA interference (RNAi) as an approach to inhibit nairovirus replication. RESULTS: Chemically synthesized siRNAs were designed to target the mRNA produced by the three genomic segments. We first demonstrated that the siRNAs targeting the NP mRNA displayed a stronger antiviral effect than those complementary to the L and M transcripts in A549 cells. We further characterized the two most efficient siRNAs showing, that the induced inhibition is specific and associated with a decrease in NP synthesis during HAZV infection. Furthermore, both siRNAs depicted an antiviral activity when used before and after HAZV infection. We next showed that HAZV was sensitive to ribavirin which is also known to inhibit CCHFV. Finally, we demonstrated the additive or synergistic antiviral effect of siRNAs used in combination with ribavirin. CONCLUSIONS: Our study highlights the interest of using RNAi (alone or in combination with ribavirin) to treat nairovirus infection. This approach has to be considered for the development of future antiviral compounds targeting CCHFV, the most pathogenic nairovirus.