Jembrana disease virus Tat can regulate human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) long terminal repeat-directed gene expression and can substitute for HIV Tat in viral replication.
ABSTRACT: Jembrana disease virus (JDV) is a bovine lentivirus genetically similar to bovine immunodeficiency virus; it causes an acute and sometimes fatal disease in infected animals. This virus carries a very potent Tat that can strongly activate not only its own long terminal repeat (LTR) but also the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) LTR. In contrast, HIV Tat cannot reciprocally activate the JDV LTR (H. Chen, G. E. Wilcox, G. Kertayadnya, and C. Wood, J. Virol. 73:658-666, 1999). This indicates that in transactivation JDV Tat may utilize a mechanism similar to but not the same as that of the HIV Tat. To further study the similarity of JDV and HIV tat in transactivation, we first tested the responses of a series of HIV LTR mutants to the JDV Tat. Cross-transactivation of HIV LTR by JDV Tat was impaired by mutations that disrupted the HIV type 1 transactivation response element (TAR) RNA stem-loop structure. Our results demonstrated that JDV Tat, like HIV Tat, transactivated the HIV LTR at least partially in a TAR-dependent manner. However, the sequence in the loop region of TAR was not as critical for the function of JDV Tat as it was for HIV Tat. The competitive inhibition of Tat-induced transactivation by the truncated JDV or HIV Tat, which consisted only of the activation domain, suggested that similar cellular factors were involved in both JDV and HIV Tat-induced transactivation. Based on the one-round transfection assay with HIV tat mutant proviruses, the cotransfected JDV tat plasmid can functionally complement the HIV tat defect. To further characterize the effect of JDV Tat on HIV, a stable chimeric HIV carrying the JDV tat gene was generated. This chimeric HIV replicated in a T-cell line, C8166, and in peripheral blood mononuclear cells, which suggested that JDV Tat can functionally substitute for HIV Tat. Further characterization of this chimeric virus will help to elucidate how JDV Tat functions and to explain the differences between HIV and JDV Tat transactivation.
Project description:Jembrana disease virus (JDV) is a newly identified bovine lentivirus that is closely related to the bovine immunodeficiency virus (BIV). JDV contains a tat gene, encoded by two exons, which has potent transactivation activity. Cotransfection of the JDV tat expression plasmid with the JDV promoter chloramphenicol acetyltransferase (CAT) construct pJDV-U3R resulted in a substantial increase in the level of CAT mRNA transcribed from the JDV long terminal repeat (LTR) and a dramatic increase in the CAT protein level. Deletion analysis of the LTR sequences showed that sequences spanning nucleotides -68 to +53, including the TATA box and the predicted first stem-loop structure of the predicted Tat response element (TAR), were required for efficient transactivation. The results, derived from site-directed mutagenesis experiments, suggested that the base pairing in the stem of the first stem-loop structure in the TAR region was important for JDV Tat-mediated transactivation; in contrast, nucleotide substitutions in the loop region of JDV TAR had less effect. For the JDV LTR, upstream sequences, from nucleotide -196 and beyond, as well as the predicted secondary structures in the R region, may have a negative effect on basal JDV promoter activity. Deletion of these regions resulted in a four- to fivefold increase in basal expression. The JDV Tat is also a potent transactivator of other animal and primate lentivirus promoters. It transactivated BIV and human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) LTRs to levels similar to those with their homologous Tat proteins. In contrast, HIV-1 Tat has minimal effects on JDV LTR expression, whereas BIV Tat moderately transactivated the JDV LTR. Our study suggests that JDV may use a mechanism of transactivation similar but not identical to those of other animal and primate lentiviruses.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) Tat protein plays an essential role in HIV-1 gene transcription. Tat transactivates HIV-1 long terminal repeat (LTR)-directed gene expression through direct interactions with the transactivation-responsive region (TAR) element and other cis elements in the LTR. The TAR-independent Tat-mediated LTR transactivation is modulated by several host factors, but the mechanism is not fully understood.<h4>Results</h4>Here, we report that Tat interacts with the Rel homology domain of RelB through its core region. Furthermore, RelB significantly increases Tat-mediated transcription of the HIV-1 LTR and viral gene expression, which is independent of the TAR. Both Tat and RelB are recruited to the HIV-1 promoter, of which RelB facilitates the recruitment of Tat to the viral LTR. The NF-κB elements are key to the accumulation of Tat and RelB on the LTR. Knockout of RelB reduces the accumulation of RNA polymerase II on the LTR, and decreases HIV-1 gene transcription. Together, our data suggest that RelB contributes to HIV-1 transactivation.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Our results demonstrate that RelB interacts with Tat and enhances TAR-independent activation of HIV-1 LTR promoter, which adds new insights into the multi-layered mechanisms of Tat in regulating the gene expression of HIV-1.
Project description:Tat is a critical regulatory factor in HIV-1 gene expression. It mediates the transactivation of transcription from the HIV-1 LTR by binding to the transactivation response (TAR) element in a complex with cyclin T1. Because of its critical and early role in HIV gene expression, Tat and its interaction with the TAR element constitute important therapeutic targets for the treatment of HIV-1 infection. Based on the known nucleolar localization properties of Tat, we constructed a chimeric small nucleolar RNA-TAR decoy that localizes to the nucleoli of human cells and colocalizes in the nucleolus with a Tat-enhanced GFP fusion protein. When the chimeric RNA was stably expressed in human T lymphoblastoid CEM cells it potently inhibited HIV-1 replication. These results demonstrate that the nucleolar trafficking of Tat is critical for HIV-1 replication and suggests a role for the nucleolus in HIV-1 viral replication.
Project description:HIV-1 Tat is an intrinsically unfolded protein playing a pivotal role in viral replication by associating with TAR region of viral LTR. Unfolded proteins are degraded by 20S proteasome in an ubiquitin independent manner. Curcumin is known to activate 20S proteasome and promotes the degradation of intrinsically unfolded p53 tumor suppressor protein. Since HIV-1 Tat protein is largerly unfolded, we hypothesized that Tat may also be targeted through this pathway. Curcumin treated Tat transfected HEK-293T cells showed a dose and time dependent degradation of Tat protein. Contrary to this HIV-1 Gag which is a properly folded protein, remained unaffected with curcumin. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR analysis showed that curcumin treatment did not affect Tat gene transcription. Curcumin increased the rate of Tat protein degradation as shown by cycloheximide (CHX) chase assay. Degradation of the Tat protein is accomplished through proteasomal pathway as proteasomal inhibitor MG132 blocked Tat degradation. Curcumin also decreased Tat mediated LTR promoter transactivation and inhibited virus production from HIV-1 infected cells. Taken together our study reveals a novel observation that curcumin causes potent degradation of Tat which may be one of the major mechanisms behind its anti HIV activity.
Project description:An arginine-rich peptide from the Jembrana disease virus (JDV) Tat protein is a structural "chameleon" that binds bovine immunodeficiency virus (BIV) or HIV TAR RNAs in two different binding modes, with an affinity for BIV TAR even higher than the cognate BIV peptide. We determined the NMR structure of the JDV Tat-BIV TAR high-affinity complex and found that the C-terminal tyrosine in JDV Tat forms a network of inter- and intramolecular hydrogen bonding and stacking interactions that simultaneously stabilize the beta-hairpin conformation of the peptide and a base triple in the RNA. A neighboring histidine also appears to help stabilize the peptide conformation. Induced fit binding is recurrent in protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interactions, and the JDV Tat complex demonstrates how high affinity can be achieved not only by optimization of the binding interface but also by inducing new intramolecular contacts that stabilize each binding partner. Comparison to the cognate BIV Tat peptide-TAR complex shows how such a costabilization mechanism can evolve with only small changes to the peptide sequence. In addition, the bound structure of BIV TAR in the chameleon peptide complex is strikingly similar to the bound conformation of HIV TAR, suggesting new strategies for the development of HIV TAR binding molecules.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) Tat protein plays an essential role in HIV gene transcription from the HIV-1 long terminal repeat (LTR) and replication. Transcriptional activity of Tat is modulated by several host factors, but the mechanism responsible for Tat regulation by host factors is not understood fully. RESULTS: Using a yeast two-hybrid screening system, we identified Nuclear ubiquitous casein and cyclin-dependent kinase substrate 1 (NUCKS1) as a novel Tat-interacting partner. Here, we report its function as a positive regulator of Tat. In a coimmunoprecipitation assay, HIV-1 Tat interacted sufficiently with both endogenous and ectopically expressed NUCKS1. In a reporter assay, ectopic expression of NUCKS1 significantly increased Tat-mediated transcription of the HIV-1 LTR, whereas knockdown of NUCKS1 by small interfering RNA diminished Tat-mediated transcription of the HIV-1 LTR. We also investigated which mechanism contributes to NUCKS1-mediated Tat activation. In a chromatin immunoprecipitation assay (ChIP), knockdown of NUCKS1 interrupted the accumulation of Tat in the transactivation-responsive (TAR) region on the LTR, which then led to suppression of viral replication. However, NUCKS1 expression did not increase Tat nuclear localization and interaction with Cyclin T1. Interestingly, the NUCKS1 expression level was lower in latently HIV-1-infected cells than in uninfected parent cells. Besides, expression level of NUCKS1 was markedly induced, which then facilitated HIV-1 reactivation in latently infected cells. CONCLUSION: Taken together, our data demonstrate clearly that NUCKS1 is a novel Tat coactivator that is required for Tat-mediated HIV-1 transcription and replication, and that it may contribute to HIV-1 reactivation in latently HIV-1 infected cells.
Project description:Transcription from the HIV-1 LTR promoter efficiently initiates but rapidly terminates because of a non-processive form of RNA polymerase II. This premature termination is overcome by assembly of an HIV-1 TAT/P-TEFb complex at the transactivation response region (TAR), a structured RNA element encoded by the first 59 nt of HIV-1 mRNA. Here we have identified a conserved DNA-binding element for the cellular transcription factor, ZASC1, in the HIV-1 core promoter immediately upstream of TAR. We show that ZASC1 interacts with TAT and P-TEFb, co-operating with TAT to regulate HIV-1 gene expression, and promoting HIV-1 transcriptional elongation. The importance of ZASC1 to HIV-1 transcription elongation was confirmed through mutagenesis of the ZASC1 binding sites in the LTR promoter, shRNAs targeting ZASC1 and expression of dominant negative ZASC1. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis revealed that ZASC1 recruits Tat and P-TEFb to the HIV-1 core promoter in a TAR-independent manner. Thus, we have identified ZASC1 as novel regulator of HIV-1 gene expression that functions through the DNA-dependent, RNA-independent recruitment of TAT/P-TEFb to the HIV-1 promoter.
Project description:The emergence of drug-resistant variants has posed a significant setback against effective antiviral treatment for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections. The choice of a nonmutable region of the viral genome such as the conserved transactivation response element (TAR element) in the 5' long terminal repeat (LTR) may potentially be an effective target for drug development. We have earlier demonstrated that a polyamide nucleotide analog (PNA) targeted to the TAR hairpin element, when transfected into cells, can effectively inhibit Tat-mediated transactivation of HIV type 1 (HIV-1) LTR (T. Mayhood et al., Biochemistry 39:11532-11539, 2000). Here we show that this anti-TAR PNA (PNA(TAR)), upon conjugation with a membrane-permeating peptide vector (transportan) retained its affinity for TAR in vitro similar to the unconjugated analog. The conjugate was efficiently internalized into the cells when added to the culture medium. Examination of the functional efficacy of the PNA(TAR)-transportan conjugate in cell culture using luciferase reporter gene constructs resulted in a significant inhibition of Tat-mediated transactivation of HIV-1 LTR. Furthermore, PNA(TAR)-transportan conjugate substantially inhibited HIV-1 production in chronically HIV-1-infected H9 cells. The mechanism of this inhibition appeared to be regulated at the level of transcription. These results demonstrate the efficacy of PNA(TAR)-transportan as a potential anti-HIV agent.
Project description:HIV-1 Tat is essential for HIV-1 replication and appears to play an important role in the pathogenesis of HIV-associated neurological complications. Secreted from infected or transfected cells, Tat has the extraordinary ability to cross the plasma membrane. In the brain, Tat can be taken up by CNS cells via receptor-mediated endocytosis. Following endocytosis and its internalization into endolysosomes, Tat must be released in order for it to activate the HIV-1 LTR promoter and facilitate HIV-1 viral replication in the nucleus. However, the underlying mechanisms whereby Tat escapes endolysosomes remain unclear. Because Tat disrupts intracellular calcium homeostasis, we investigated the involvement of calcium in Tat endolysosome escape and subsequent LTR transactivation. We demonstrated that chelating endolysosome calcium with high-affinity rhodamine-dextran or chelating cytosolic calcium with BAPTA-AM attenuated Tat endolysosome escape and LTR transactivation. Significantly, we demonstrated that pharmacologically blocking and knocking down the endolysosome-resident two-pore channels (TPCs) attenuated Tat endolysosome escape and LTR transactivation. This calcium-mediated effect appears to be selective for TPCs because knocking down TRPML1 calcium channels was without effect. Our findings suggest that calcium released from TPCs is involved in Tat endolysosome escape and subsequent LTR transactivation. TPCs might represent a novel therapeutic target against HIV-1 infection and HIV-associated neurological complications.
Project description:HIV-1Tat (trans-acting activator of transcription) plays essential roles in the replication through viral mRNA and genome transcription from the HIV-1 LTR promoter. However, Tat undergoes continuous amino acid substitutions. As a consequence, the virus escapes from host immunity indicating that genetic diversity of Tat protein in major HIV-1 subtypes is required to be continuously monitored. We analyzed available full-length HIV-1 sequences of subtypes B (n=493) and C (n=280) strains circulating worldwide. We observed 81% and 84% nucleotide sequence identities of HIV-1 Tat for subtypes B and C, respectively. Based on phylogenetic and mutation analyses, global diversity of subtype B was apparently higher compared to that of subtype C. Positively selected sites, such as positions Ser68 and Ser70 in both subtypes, were located in the Tat-transactivation responsive RNA (TAR) interaction domain. We also found positively selected sites in exon 2, such as positions Ser75, Pro77, Asp80, Pro81 and Ser87 for both subtypes. Our study provides useful information on the full-length HIV-1 Tat sequences in globally circulating strains.