Deep sequencing of protease inhibitor resistant HIV patient isolates reveals patterns of correlated mutations in Gag and protease.
ABSTRACT: While the role of drug resistance mutations in HIV protease has been studied comprehensively, mutations in its substrate, Gag, have not been extensively cataloged. Using deep sequencing, we analyzed a unique collection of longitudinal viral samples from 93 patients who have been treated with therapies containing protease inhibitors (PIs). Due to the high sequence coverage within each sample, the frequencies of mutations at individual positions were calculated with high precision. We used this information to characterize the variability in the Gag polyprotein and its effects on PI-therapy outcomes. To examine covariation of mutations between two different sites using deep sequencing data, we developed an approach to estimate the tight bounds on the two-site bivariate probabilities in each viral sample, and the mutual information between pairs of positions based on all the bounds. Utilizing the new methodology we found that mutations in the matrix and p6 proteins contribute to continued therapy failure and have a major role in the network of strongly correlated mutations in the Gag polyprotein, as well as between Gag and protease. Although covariation is not direct evidence of structural propensities, we found the strongest correlations between residues on capsid and matrix of the same Gag protein were often due to structural proximity. This suggests that some of the strongest inter-protein Gag correlations are the result of structural proximity. Moreover, the strong covariation between residues in matrix and capsid at the N-terminus with p1 and p6 at the C-terminus is consistent with residue-residue contacts between these proteins at some point in the viral life cycle.
Project description:GS-8374 is a potent HIV protease inhibitor (PI) with a unique diethyl-phosphonate moiety. Due to a balanced contribution of enthalpic and entropic components to its interaction with the protease (PR) active site, the compound retains activity against HIV mutants with high-level multi-PI resistance. We report here the in vitro selection and characterization of HIV variants resistant to GS-8374. While highly resistant viruses with multiple mutations in PR were isolated in the presence of control PIs, an HIV variant displaying moderate (14-fold) resistance to GS-8374 was generated only after prolonged passaging for >300 days. The isolate showed low-level cross-resistance to darunavir, atazanavir, lopinavir, and saquinavir, but not other PIs, and contained a single R41K mutation in PR combined with multiple genotypic changes in the Gag matrix, capsid, nucleocapsid, and SP2 domains. Mutations also occurred in the transframe peptide and p6* domain of the Gag-Pol polyprotein. Analysis of recombinant HIV variants indicated that mutations in Gag, but not the R41K in PR, conferred reduced susceptibility to GS-8374. The Gag mutations acted in concert, since they did not affect susceptibility when introduced individually. Analysis of viral particles revealed that the mutations rendered Gag more susceptible to PR-mediated cleavage in the presence of GS-8374. In summary, the emergence of resistance to GS-8374 involved a combination of substrate mutations without typical resistance mutations in PR. These substrate changes were distributed throughout Gag and acted in an additive manner. Thus, they are classified as primary resistance mutations indicating a unique mechanism and pathway of resistance development for GS-8374.
Project description:Other than cleavage site mutations, there is little data on specific positions within Gag that impact on HIV protease inhibitor susceptibility. We have recently shown that non-cleavage site mutations in gag, particularly within matrix protein can restore replication capacity and further reduce protease inhibitor drug susceptibility when coexpressed with a drug-resistant (mutant) protease. The matrix protein of this patient-derived virus was studied in order to identify specific changes responsible for this phenotype. Three amino acid changes in matrix (R76K, Y79F, and T81A) had an impact on replication capacity as well as drug susceptibility. Introduction of these three changes into wild-type (WT) matrix resulted in an increase in the replication capacity of the protease mutant virus to a level similar to that achieved by all the changes within the mutant matrix and part of the capsid protein. Pairs of changes to wild-type matrix led to an increased replication capacity of the protease mutant (although less than with all three changes). Having only these three changes to matrix in a wild-type virus (with wild-type protease) resulted in a 5- to 7-fold change in protease inhibitor 50% effective concentration (EC??). Individual changes did not have as great an effect on replication capacity or drug susceptibility, demonstrating an interaction between these positions, also confirmed by sequence covariation analysis. Molecular modeling predicts that each of the three mutations would result in a loss of hydrogen bonds within ?-helix-4 of matrix, leading to the hypothesis that more flexibility within this region or altered matrix structure would account for our findings.
Project description:Mutations can accumulate in the protease and gag genes of human immunodeficiency virus in patients who fail therapy with protease inhibitor drugs. Mutations within protease, the drug target, have been extensively studied. Mutations in gag have been less well studied, mostly concentrating on cleavage sites. A retroviral vector system has been adapted to study full-length gag, protease, and reverse transcriptase genes from patient-derived viruses. Patient plasma-derived mutant full-length gag, protease, and gag-protease from a multidrug-resistant virus were studied. Mutant protease alone led to a 95% drop in replication capacity that was completely rescued by coexpressing the full-length coevolved mutant gag gene. Cleavage site mutations have been shown to improve the replication capacity of mutated protease. Strikingly, in this study, the matrix region and part of the capsid region from the coevolved mutant gag gene were sufficient to achieve full recovery of replication capacity due to the mutant protease, without cleavage site mutations. The same region of gag from a second, unrelated, multidrug-resistant clinical isolate also rescued the replication capacity of the original mutant protease, suggesting a common mechanism that evolves with resistance to protease inhibitors. Mutant gag alone conferred reduced susceptibility to all protease inhibitors and acted synergistically when linked to mutant protease. The matrix region and partial capsid region of gag sufficient to rescue replication capacity also conferred resistance to protease inhibitors. Thus, the amino terminus of Gag has a previously unidentified and important function in protease inhibitor susceptibility and replication capacity.
Project description:Retrovirus assembly and maturation involve folding and transport of viral proteins to the virus assembly site followed by subsequent proteolytic cleavage of the Gag polyprotein within the nascent virion. We report that inhibiting proteasomes severely decreases the budding, maturation, and infectivity of HIV. Although processing of the Env glycoproteins is not changed, proteasome inhibitors inhibit processing of Gag polyprotein by the viral protease without affecting the activity of the HIV-1 viral protease itself, as demonstrated by in vitro processing of HIV-1 Gag polyprotein Pr55. Furthermore, this effect occurs independently of the virus release function of the HIV-1 accessory protein Vpu and is not limited to HIV-1, as proteasome inhibitors also reduce virus release and Gag processing of HIV-2. Electron microscopy analysis revealed ultrastructural changes in budding virions similar to mutants in the late assembly domain of p6(gag), a C-terminal domain of Pr55 required for efficient virus maturation and release. Proteasome inhibition reduced the level of free ubiquitin in HIV-1-infected cells and prevented monoubiquitination of p6(gag). Consistent with this, viruses with mutations in PR or p6(gag) were resistant to detrimental effects mediated by proteasome inhibitors. These results indicate the requirement for an active proteasome/ubiquitin system in release and maturation of infectious HIV particles and provide a potential pharmaceutical strategy for interfering with retrovirus replication.
Project description:Resistance to various human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) protease inhibitors (PIs) challenges the effectiveness of therapies in treating HIV-1-infected individuals and AIDS patients. The virus accumulates mutations within the protease (PR) that render the PIs less potent. Occasionally, Gag sequences also coevolve with mutations at PR cleavage sites contributing to drug resistance. In this study, we investigated the structural basis of coevolution of the p1-p6 cleavage site with the nelfinavir (NFV) resistance D30N/N88D protease mutations by determining crystal structures of wild-type and NFV-resistant HIV-1 protease in complex with p1-p6 substrate peptide variants with L449F and/or S451N. Alterations of residue 30's interaction with the substrate are compensated by the coevolving L449F and S451N cleavage site mutations. This interdependency in the PR-p1-p6 interactions enhances intermolecular contacts and reinforces the overall fit of the substrate within the substrate envelope, likely enabling coevolution to sustain substrate recognition and cleavage in the presence of PR resistance mutations.Resistance to human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) protease inhibitors challenges the effectiveness of therapies in treating HIV-1-infected individuals and AIDS patients. Mutations in HIV-1 protease selected under the pressure of protease inhibitors render the inhibitors less potent. Occasionally, Gag sequences also mutate and coevolve with protease, contributing to maintenance of viral fitness and to drug resistance. In this study, we investigated the structural basis of coevolution at the Gag p1-p6 cleavage site with the nelfinavir (NFV) resistance D30N/N88D protease mutations. Our structural analysis reveals the interdependency of protease-substrate interactions and how coevolution may restore substrate recognition and cleavage in the presence of protease drug resistance mutations.
Project description:To identify novel viral determinants in HIV-1 protease, Gag, and envelope V3 that relate to outcomes to initial protease inhibitor-based antiretroviral therapy.A longitudinal cohort study of protease inhibitor-naive, HIV-infected individuals was designed to identify genetic variables in viral Gag and envelope sequences associated with response to antiretroviral therapy.Genetic and statistical models, including amino acid profiles, phylogenetic analyses, receiver operating characteristic analyses, and covariation analyses, were used to evaluate viral sequences and clinical variables from individuals who developed immune reconstitution with or without suppression of viral replication.Pretherapy chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4-using V3 regions had significant associations with viral failure (P = 0.04). Amino acid residues in protease covaried with Gag residues, particularly in p7(NC), independent of cleavage sites. Pretherapy V3 charge combined with p6(Pol) and p2/p7(NC) cleavage site genotypes produced the best three-variable model to predict viral suppression in 88% of individuals. Combinations of baseline CD4 cell percentage with genetic determinants in Gag-protease predicted viral fitness in 100% of individuals who failed to suppress viral replication.Baseline genetic determinants in Gag p6(Pol) and p2/p7(NC), as well as envelope, provide novel combinations of biomarkers for predicting emergence of viral resistance to initial therapy regimens.
Project description:Naturally occurring polymorphisms in the protease of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) subtype C would be expected to lead to adaptive (compensatory) changes in protease cleavage sites. To test this hypothesis, we examined the prevalences and patterns of cleavage site polymorphisms in the Gag, Gag-Pol, and Nef cleavage sites of C compared to those in non-C subtypes. Codon-based maximum-likelihood methods were used to assess the natural selection and evolutionary history of individual cleavage sites. Seven cleavage sites (p17/p24, p24/p2, NC/p1, NC/TFP, PR/RT, RT/p66, and p66/IN) were well conserved over time and in all HIV-1 subtypes. One site (p1/p6(gag)) exhibited moderate variation, and four sites (p2/NC, TFP/p6(pol), p6(pol)/PR, and Nef) were highly variable, both within and between subtypes. Three of the variable sites are known to be major determinants of polyprotein processing and virion production. P2/NC controls the rate and order of cleavage, p6(gag) is an important phosphoprotein required for virion release, and TFP/p6(pol), a novel cleavage site in the transframe domain, influences the specificity of Gag-Pol processing and the activation of protease. Overall, 58.3% of the 12 HIV-1 cleavage sites were significantly more diverse in C than in B viruses. When analyzed as a single concatenated fragment of 360 bp, 96.0% of group M cleavage site sequences fell into subtype-specific phylogenetic clusters, suggesting that they coevolved with the virus. Natural variation at C cleavage sites may play an important role, not only in regulation of the viral cycle but also in disease progression and response to therapy.
Project description:Assembly and maturation of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) are governed by the Gag polyprotein. Here we study the conformation and dynamics of a large HIV-1 Gag fragment comprising the matrix, capsid, spacer peptide 1 and nucleocapsid domains (referred to as ?Gag) by heteronuclear multidimensional NMR spectroscopy. In solution, ?Gag exists in a dynamic equilibrium between monomeric and dimeric states. In the presence of nucleic acids and at low ionic strength ?Gag assembles into immature virus-like particles. The structured domains of ?Gag (matrix, the N- and C-terminal domains of capsid, and the N- and C-terminal zinc knuckles of nucleocapsid) retain their fold and reorient semi-independently of one another; the linkers connecting the structural domains, including spacer peptide 1 that connects capsid to nucleocapsid, are intrinsically disordered. Structural changes in ?Gag upon proteolytic processing by HIV-1 protease, monitored by NMR in real-time, demonstrate that the conformational transition of the N-terminal 13 residues of capsid from an intrinsically disordered coil to a ?-hairpin upon cleavage at the matrix|capsid junction occurs five times faster than cleavage at the capsid|spacer peptide 1 junction. Finally, nucleic acids interact with both nucleocapsid and matrix domains, and proteolytic processing at the spacer peptide 1|nucleocapsid junction by HIV-1 protease is accelerated in the presence of single-stranded DNA.
Project description:Drug resistance is an important cause of antiretroviral therapy failure in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients. Mutations in the protease render the virus resistant to protease inhibitors (PIs). Gag cleavage sites also mutate, sometimes correlating with resistance mutations in the protease, but their contribution to resistance has not been systematically analyzed. The present study examines mutations in Gag cleavage sites that associate with protease mutations and the impact of these associations on drug susceptibilities. Significant associations were observed between mutations in the nucleocapsid-p1 (NC-p1) and p1-p6 cleavage sites and various PI resistance-associated mutations in the protease. Several patterns were frequently observed, including mutations in the NC-p1 cleavage site in combination with I50L, V82A, and I84V within the protease and mutations within the p1-p6 cleavage site in combination with D30N, I50V, and I84V within the protease. For most patterns, viruses with mutations both in the protease and in either cleavage site were significantly less susceptible to specific PIs than viruses with mutations in the protease alone. Altered PI resistance in HIV-1 was found to be associated with the presence of Gag cleavage site mutations. These studies suggest that associated cleavage site mutations may contribute to PI susceptibility in highly specific ways depending on the particular combinations of mutations and inhibitors. Thus, cleavage site mutations should be considered when assessing the level of PI resistance.
Project description:Despite the major role of Gag in establishing resistance of HIV-1 to protease inhibitors (PIs), very limited data are available on the total contribution of Gag residues to resistance to PIs. To identify in detail Gag residues and structural interfaces associated with the development of HIV-1 resistance to PIs, we traced viral evolution under the pressure of PIs using Gag-protease single genome sequencing and coevolution analysis of protein sequences in 4 patients treated with PIs over a 9-year period. We identified a total of 38 Gag residues correlated with the protease, 32 of which were outside Gag cleavage sites. These residues were distributed in 23 Gag-protease groups of coevolution, with the viral matrix and the capsid represented in 87% and 52% of the groups. In addition, we uncovered the distribution of Gag correlated residues in specific protein surfaces of the inner face of the viral matrix and at the Cyclophilin A binding loop of the capsid. In summary, our findings suggest a tight interdependency between Gag structural proteins and the protease during the development of resistance of HIV-1 to PIs.