Identification of a structural motif crucial for infectivity of hepatitis B viruses.
ABSTRACT: Infectious entry of hepatitis B viruses (HBV) has nonconventional facets. Here we analyzed whether a cell-permeable peptide [translocation motif (TLM)] identified within the surface protein of human HBV is a general feature of all hepadnaviruses and plays a role in the viral life cycle. Surface proteins of all hepadnaviruses contain conserved functional TLMs. Genetic inactivation of the duck HBV TLMs does not interfere with viral morphogenesis; however, these mutants are noninfectious. TLM mutant viruses bind to cells and are taken up into the endosomal compartment, but they cannot escape from endosomes. Processing of surface protein by endosomal proteases induces their exposure on the virus surface. This unmasking of TLMs mediates translocation of viral particles across the endosomal membrane into the cytosol, a prerequisite for productive infection. The ability of unmasked TLMs to translocate processed HBV particles across cellular membranes was shown by confocal immunofluorescence microscopy and by infection of nonpermissive cell lines with HBV processed in vitro with endosomal lysate. Based on these data, we propose an infectious entry mechanism unique for hepadnaviruses that involves virus internalization by receptor-mediated endocytosis followed by processing of surface protein in endosomes. This processing activates the function of TLMs that are essential for viral particle translocation through the endosomal membrane into the cytosol and productive infection.
Project description:The early events of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection remain unclear. In 2006, Stoeckl et al. proposed a new entry mechanism involving a translocation motif (TLM) present in the pre-S2 domain of envelope proteins (L. Stoeckl, A. Funk, A. Kopitzki, B. Brandenburg, S. Oess, H. Will, H. Sirma, and E. Hildt, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 103:6730-6734, 2006). After receptor binding and internalization into the endosomal compartment, this motif would allow the translocation of HBV particles through the endosomal membrane into the cytosol. In this study we have used two different mutated viruses containing a truncated TLM and showed their ability to infect human hepatocytes in primary culture, thus demonstrating the dispensability of the TLM for HBV infectivity.
Project description:Tallysomycins (TLMs) belong to the bleomycin family of anticancer antibiotics. TLMs differ from bleomycins primarily by the presence of a 4-amino-4,6-dideoxy-l-talose sugar attached to C-41 as part of a glycosylcarbinolamide. We previously proposed, on the basis of bioinformatics analysis of the tlm biosynthetic gene cluster from Streptoalloteichus hindustanus E465-94 ATCC 31158, that the tlmK gene is responsible for the attachment of this sugar moiety. We now report that inactivation of tlmK in S. hindustanus abolished TLM A and TLM B production, the resultant DeltatlmK mutant instead accumulated five new metabolites, and introduction of a functional copy of tlmK to the DeltatlmK mutant restored TLM A and TLM B production. Two major metabolites, TLM K-1 and TLM K-2, together with three minor metabolites, TLM K-3, TLM K-4, and TLM K-5, were isolated from the DeltatlmK mutant, and their structures were elucidated. These findings provide experimental evidence supporting the previous functional assignment of tlmK to encode a glycosyltransferase and unveil two carbinolamide pseudoaglycones as key intermediates in the TLM biosynthetic pathway. TlmK stabilizes the carbinolamide intermediates by glycosylating their hemiaminal hydroxyl groups, thereby protecting them from hydrolysis during TLM biosynthesis. In the absence of TlmK, the carbinolamide intermediates fragment to produce an amide TLM K-1 and aldehyde intermediates, which undergo further oxidative fragmentation to afford carboxylic acids TLM K-2, TLM K-3, TLM K-4, and TLM K-5.
Project description:Sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP) is expressed at the surface of human hepatocytes and functions as an entry receptor of hepatitis B virus (HBV). Recently, we have reported that epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is involved in NTCP-mediated viral internalization during the cell entry process. Here, we analyzed which function of EGFR is essential for mediating HBV internalization. In contrast to the reported crucial function of EGFR-downstream signaling for the entry of hepatitis C virus (HCV), blockade of EGFR-downstream signaling proteins, including mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K), and signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT), had no or only minor effects on HBV infection. Instead, deficiency of EGFR endocytosis resulting from either a deleterious mutation in EGFR or genetic knockdown of endocytosis adaptor molecules abrogated internalization of HBV via NTCP and prevented viral infection. EGFR activation triggered a time-dependent relocalization of HBV preS1 to the early and late endosomes and to lysosomes in concert with EGFR transport. Suppression of EGFR ubiquitination by site-directed mutagenesis or by knocking down two EGFR-sorting molecules, signal-transducing adaptor molecule (STAM) and lysosomal protein transmembrane 4? (LAPTM4B), suggested that EGFR transport to the late endosome is critical for efficient HBV infection. Cumulatively, these results support the idea that the EGFR endocytosis/sorting machinery drives the translocation of NTCP-bound HBV from the cell surface to the endosomal network, which eventually enables productive viral infection.
Project description:A high prevalence (42.6%) of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection was suspected in 195 formerly captive orangutans due to a large number of serum samples which cross-reacted with human HBV antigens. It was assumed that such viral infections were contracted from humans during captivity. However, two wild orangutans were identified which were HBV surface antigen positive, indicating that HBV or related viruses may be occurring naturally in the orangutan populations. Sequence analyses of seven isolates revealed that orangutans were infected with hepadnaviruses but that these were clearly divergent from the six known human HBV genotypes and those of other nonhuman hepadnaviruses reported. Phylogenetic analyses revealed geographic clustering with Southeast Asian genotype C viruses and gibbon ape HBV. This implies a common origin of infection within this geographic region, with cross-species transmission of hepadnaviruses among hominoids.
Project description:The hepatitis B virus (HBV), family Hepadnaviridae, is one of most relevant human pathogens. HBV origins are enigmatic, and no zoonotic reservoirs are known. Here, we screened 3,080 specimens from 54 bat species representing 11 bat families for hepadnaviral DNA. Ten specimens (0.3%) from Panama and Gabon yielded unique hepadnaviruses in coancestral relation to HBV. Full genome sequencing allowed classification as three putative orthohepadnavirus species based on genome lengths (3,149-3,377 nt), presence of middle HBV surface and X-protein genes, and sequence distance criteria. Hepatic tropism in bats was shown by quantitative PCR and in situ hybridization. Infected livers showed histopathologic changes compatible with hepatitis. Human hepatocytes transfected with all three bat viruses cross-reacted with sera against the HBV core protein, concordant with the phylogenetic relatedness of these hepadnaviruses and HBV. One virus from Uroderma bilobatum, the tent-making bat, cross-reacted with monoclonal antibodies against the HBV antigenicity determining S domain. Up to 18.4% of bat sera contained antibodies against bat hepadnaviruses. Infectious clones were generated to study all three viruses in detail. Hepatitis D virus particles pseudotyped with surface proteins of U. bilobatum HBV, but neither of the other two viruses could infect primary human and Tupaia belangeri hepatocytes. Hepatocyte infection occurred through the human HBV receptor sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide but could not be neutralized by sera from vaccinated humans. Antihepadnaviral treatment using an approved reverse transcriptase inhibitor blocked replication of all bat hepadnaviruses. Our data suggest that bats may have been ancestral sources of primate hepadnaviruses. The observed zoonotic potential might affect concepts aimed at eradicating HBV.
Project description:Cross-presentation by dendritic cells (DCs) requires surface molecules such as lectin, CD40, langerin, heat shock protein, mannose receptor, mediated endocytosis, the endosomal translocation of internalized antigen, and the relocation of transporter associated with antigen processing (TAP). Although the activation of ?7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (?7 nAchR) up-regulate surface molecule expression, augment endocytosis, and enhance cross-presentation, the molecular mechanism of ?7 nAchR activation-increased cross-presentation is still poorly understood. In this study, we investigated the role of mannose receptor in nicotine-increased cross-presentation and the mechanism that endotoxins orchestrating the recruitment of TAP toward endosomes. We demonstrated that nicotine increase the expressiones of mannose receptor and Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) via PI3K-Akt-mTOR-p70S6 pathway. Both endosomal translocation of mannose receptor-internalized antigens and TLR4 sig- naling are necessary for nicotine-augmented cross-presentation and cross-priming. Importantly, the recruitment of TAP toward endosomes via TLR4-MyD88-IRAK4 signaling contributes to nicotine-increased cross-presentation and cross-activation of T cells. Thus, these data suggest that increased recruitment of TAP to Ag-containing vesicles contributes to the superior cross-presentation efficacy of ?7 nAchR activated DCs.
Project description:TLR7 mediates innate immune responses to viral RNA in endocytic compartments. Mouse and human (h)TLR7 undergo proteolytic cleavage, resulting in the generation of a C-terminal fragment that accumulates in endosomes and associates with the signaling adaptor MyD88 upon receptor triggering by TLR7 agonists. Although mouse TLR7 is cleaved in endosomes by acidic proteases, hTLR7 processing can occur at neutral pH throughout the secretory pathway through the activity of furin-like proprotein convertases. However, the mechanisms by which cleaved hTLR7 reaches the endosomal compartment remain unclear. In this study, we demonstrate that, after hTLR7 proteolytic processing, the liberated amino (N)-terminal fragment remains bound to the C terminus through disulfide bonds and provides key trafficking information that ensures correct delivery of the complex to endosomal compartments. In the absence of the N-terminal fragment, the C-terminal fragment is redirected to the cell surface, where it is functionally inactive. Our data reveal a novel role for the N terminus of hTLR7 as a molecular chaperone that provides processed hTLR7 with the correct targeting instructions to reach the endosomal compartment, hence ensuring its biological activity and preventing inadvertent cell surface responses to self-RNA.
Project description:Previous studies have attempted to clarify the roles of the pre-S1 and pre-S2 domains of the large envelope protein of hepatitis B virus (HBV) in attachment and entry into susceptible cells. Difficulties arise in that these domains contain regions involved in the nucleocapsid assembly of HBV and overlapping with the coding regions of the viral polymerase and RNA sequences required for reverse transcription. Such difficulties can be circumvented with hepatitis delta virus (HDV), which needs the HBV large envelope protein only for infectivity. Thus, mutated HBV envelope proteins were examined for their effects on HDV infectivity. Changing the C-terminal region of pre-S1 critical for HBV assembly allowed the envelopment of HDV and had no effect on infectivity in primary human hepatocytes. Similarly, a deletion of the 12 amino acids of a putative translocation motif (TLM) in pre-S2 had no effect. Thus, these two regions are not necessary for HDV infectivity and, by inference, are not needed for HBV attachment and entry into susceptible cells.
Project description:Hepadnaviruses, including hepatitis B virus (HBV), a highly relevant human pathogen, are small enveloped DNA viruses that replicate via reverse transcription. All hepadnaviruses display a narrow tissue and host tropism. For HBV, this restricts efficient experimental in vivo infection to chimpanzees. While the cellular factors mediating infection are largely unknown, the large viral envelope protein (L) plays a pivotal role for infectivity. Furthermore, certain segments of the PreS domain of L from duck HBV (DHBV) enhanced infectivity for cultured duck hepatocytes of pseudotyped heron HBV (HHBV), a virus unable to infect ducks in vivo. This implied a crucial role for the PreS sequence from amino acid 22 to 90 in the duck tropism of DHBV. Reasoning that reciprocal replacements would reduce infectivity for ducks, we generated spreading-competent chimeric DHBVs with L proteins in which segments 22-90 (Du-He4) or its subsegments 22-37 and 37-90 (Du-He2, Du-He3) are derived from HHBV. Infectivity for duck hepatocytes of Du-He4 and Du-He3, though not Du-He2, was indeed clearly reduced compared to wild-type DHBV. Surprisingly, however, in ducks even Du-He4 caused high-titered, persistent, horizontally and vertically transmissable infections, with kinetics of viral spread similar to those of DHBV when inoculated at doses of 10(8) viral genome equivalents (vge) per animal. Low-dose infections down to 300 vge per duck did not reveal a significant reduction in specific infectivity of the chimera. Hence, sequence alterations in PreS that limited infectivity in vitro did not do so in vivo. These data reveal a much more complex correlation between PreS sequence and host specificity than might have been anticipated; more generally, they question the value of cultured hepatocytes for reliably predicting in vivo infectivity of avian and, by inference, mammalian hepadnaviruses, with potential implications for the risk assessment of vaccine and drug resistant HBV variants.
Project description:Hepatitis B virus (HBV) and its hepadnavirus relatives infect a wide range of vertebrates, from fish to human. Hepadnaviruses and their hosts have a long history of acquiring adaptive mutations. However, there are no reports providing direct molecular evidence for such a coevolutionary "arms race" between hepadnaviruses and their hosts. Here, we present evidence suggesting that the adaptive evolution of the sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP), an HBV receptor, has been influenced by virus infection. Evolutionary analysis of the NTCP-encoding genes from 20 mammals showed that most NTCP residues are highly conserved among species, exhibiting evolution under negative selection (dN/dS ratio [ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous evolutionary changes] of <1); this observation implies that the evolution of NTCP is restricted by maintaining its original protein function. However, 0.7% of NTCP amino acid residues exhibit rapid evolution under positive selection (dN/dS ratio of >1). Notably, a substitution at amino acid (aa) 158, a positively selected residue, converting the human NTCP to a monkey-type sequence abrogated the capacity to support HBV infection; conversely, a substitution at this residue converting the monkey Ntcp to the human sequence was sufficient to confer HBV susceptibility. Together, these observations suggested a close association of the aa 158 positive selection with the pressure by virus infection. Moreover, the aa 158 sequence determined attachment of the HBV envelope protein to the host cell, demonstrating the mechanism whereby HBV infection would create positive selection at this NTCP residue. In summary, we provide the first evidence in agreement with the function of hepadnavirus as a driver for inducing adaptive mutation in host receptor.IMPORTANCE HBV and its hepadnavirus relatives infect a wide range of vertebrates, with a long infectious history (hundreds of millions of years). Such a long history generally allows adaptive mutations in hosts to escape from infection while simultaneously allowing adaptive mutations in viruses to overcome host barriers. However, there is no published molecular evidence for such a coevolutionary arms race between hepadnaviruses and hosts. In the present study, we performed coevolutionary phylogenetic analysis between hepadnaviruses and the sodium taurocholate cotransporting polypeptide (NTCP), an HBV receptor, combined with virological experimental assays for investigating the biological significance of NTCP sequence variation. Our data provide the first molecular evidence supporting that HBV-related hepadnaviruses drive adaptive evolution in the NTCP sequence, including a mechanistic explanation of how NTCP mutations determine host viral susceptibility. Our novel insights enhance our understanding of how hepadnaviruses evolved with their hosts, permitting the acquisition of strong species specificity.