Adaptor Protein 1A Facilitates Dengue Virus Replication.
ABSTRACT: Rearrangement of membrane structure induced by dengue virus (DENV) is essential for replication, and requires host cellular machinery. Adaptor protein complex (AP)-1 is a host component, which can be recruited to components required for membrane rearrangement. Therefore, dysfunction of AP-1 may affect membrane organization, thereby decreasing replication of virus in infected cells. In the present study, AP-1-dependent traffic inhibitor inhibited DENV protein expression and virion production. We further clarified the role of AP-1A in the life cycle of DENV by RNA interference. AP-1A was not involved in DENV entry into cells. However, it facilitated DENV RNA replication. Viral RNA level was reduced significantly in Huh7 cells transfected with AP-1A small interfering RNA (siRNA) compared with control siRNA. Transfection of naked DENV viral RNA into Huh7 cells transfected with AP-1A siRNA resulted in less viral RNA and virion production than transfection into Huh7 cells transfected with control siRNA. Huh7 cells transfected with AP-1A siRNA showed greater modification of membrane structures and fewer vesicular packets compared with cells transfected with control siRNA. Therefore, AP-1A may partly control DENV-induced rearrangement of membrane structures required for viral replication.
Project description:Tomatidine, a natural steroidal alkaloid from unripe green tomatoes has been shown to exhibit many health benefits. We recently provided in vitro evidence that tomatidine reduces the infectivity of Dengue virus (DENV) and Chikungunya virus (CHIKV), two medically important arthropod-borne human infections for which no treatment options are available. We observed a potent antiviral effect with EC50 values of 0.82 μM for DENV-2 and 1.3 μM for CHIKV-LR. In this study, we investigated how tomatidine controls CHIKV infectivity. Using mass spectrometry, we identified that tomatidine induces the expression of p62, CD98, metallothionein and thioredoxin-related transmembrane protein 2 in Huh7 cells. The hits p62 and CD98 were validated, yet subsequent analysis revealed that they are not responsible for the observed antiviral effect. In parallel, we sought to identify at which step of the virus replication cycle tomatidine controls virus infectivity. A strong antiviral effect was seen when in vitro transcribed CHIKV RNA was transfected into Huh7 cells treated with tomatidine, thereby excluding a role for tomatidine during CHIKV cell entry. Subsequent determination of the number of intracellular viral RNA copies and viral protein expression levels during natural infection revealed that tomatidine reduces the RNA copy number and viral protein expression levels in infected cells. Once cells are infected, tomatidine is not able to interfere with active RNA replication yet it can reduce viral protein expression. Collectively, the results delineate that tomatidine controls viral protein expression to exert its antiviral activity. Lastly, sequential passaging of CHIKV in presence of tomatidine did not lead to viral resistance. Collectively, these results further emphasize the potential of tomatidine as an antiviral treatment towards CHIKV infection.
Project description:Dengue is the most widespread arbovirus infection and poses a serious health and economic issue in tropical and subtropical countries. Currently no licensed vaccine or compounds can be used to prevent or manage the severity of dengue virus (DENV) infection. Honokiol, a lignan biphenol derived from the Magnolia tree, is commonly used in Eastern medicine. Here we report that honokiol has profound antiviral activity against serotype 2 DENV (DENV-2). In addition to inhibiting the intracellular DENV-2 replicon, honokiol was shown to suppress the replication of DENV-2 in baby hamster kidney (BHK) and human hepatocarcinoma Huh7 cells. At the maximum non-toxic dose of honokiol treatment, the production of infectious DENV particles was reduced >90% in BHK and Huh7 cells. The underlying mechanisms revealed that the expression of DENV-2 nonstructural protein NS1/NS3 and its replicating intermediate, double-strand RNA, was dramatically reduced by honokiol treatment. Honokiol has no effect on the expression of DENV putative receptors, but may interfere with the endocytosis of DENV-2 by abrogating the co-localization of DENV envelope glycoprotein and the early endosomes. These results indicate that honokiol inhibits the replication, viral gene expression, and endocytotic process of DENV-2, making it a promising agent for chemotherapy of DENV infection.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND AIM:We have reported previously that synthetic small interfering RNA (siRNA) and DNA-based siRNA expression vectors efficiently and specifically suppress hepatitis C virus (HCV) replication in vitro. In this study, we investigated the effects of the siRNA targeting HCV-RNA in vivo. METHODS:We constructed recombinant retrovirus and adenovirus expressing short hairpin RNA (shRNA), and transfected into replicon-expressing cells in vitro and transgenic mice in vivo. RESULTS:Retroviral transduction of Huh7 cells to express shRNA and subsequent transfection of an HCV replicon into the cells showed that the cells had acquired resistance to HCV replication. Infection of cells expressing the HCV replicon with an adenovirus expressing shRNA resulted in efficient vector delivery and expression of shRNA, leading to suppression of the replicon in the cells by approximately 10(-3). Intravenous delivery of the adenovirus expressing shRNA into transgenic mice that can be induced to express HCV structural proteins by the Cre/loxP switching system resulted in specific suppression of virus protein synthesis in the liver. CONCLUSION:Taken together, our results support the feasibility of utilizing gene targeting therapy based on siRNA and/or shRNA expression to counteract HCV replication, which might prove valuable in the treatment of hepatitis C.
Project description:Despite recent successes in generating subgenomic RNA replicons derived from genotype 1b strains of hepatitis C virus (HCV) that replicate efficiently in cultured cells, it has proven difficult to generate efficiently replicating RNAs from any other genotype of HCV. This includes genotype 1a, even though it is closely related to genotype 1b. We show here that an important restriction to replication of the genotype 1a H77c strain RNA in normal Huh7 cells resides within the amino-terminal 75 residues of the NS3 protease. We identified adaptive mutations located within this NS3 domain and within NS4A, in close proximity to the essential protease cofactor sequence, that act cooperative to substantially enhance the replication of this genotype 1a RNA in Huh7 cells. These and additional adaptive mutations, identified through a series of iterative transfections and the selection of G418-resistant cell clones, form two groups associating with distinct nonstructural protein domains: the NS3/4A protease and NS5A. A combination of mutations from both groups led to robust replication of otherwise unmodified H77c genomic RNA that was readily detectable by northern analysis within 4 days of transfection into Huh7 cells. We speculate that these adaptive mutations favorably influence assembly of the replicase complex with host cell-specific proteins, or alternatively promote interactions of NS3/4A and/or NS5A with cellular proteins involved in host cell antiviral defenses.
Project description:Hepatic dysfunction is a feature of dengue virus (DENV) infection. Hepatic biopsy specimens obtained from fatal cases of DENV infection show apoptosis, which relates to the pathogenesis of DENV infection. However, how DENV induced liver injury is not fully understood. In this study, we aim to identify the factors that influence cell death by employing an apoptosis-related siRNA library screening. Our results show the effect of 558 gene silencing on caspase 3-mediated apoptosis in DENV-infected Huh7 cells. The majority of genes that contributed to apoptosis were the apoptosis-related kinase enzymes. Tumor necrosis factor superfamily member 12 (TNFSF12), and sphingosine kinase 2 (SPHK2), were selected as the candidate genes to further validate their influences on DENV-induced apoptosis. Transfection of siRNA targeting SPHK2 but not TNFSF12 genes reduced apoptosis determined by Annexin V/PI staining. Knockdown of SPHK2 did not reduce caspase 8 activity; however, did significantly reduce caspase 9 activity, suggesting its involvement of SPHK2 in the intrinsic pathway of apoptosis. Treatment of ABC294649, an inhibitor of SPHK2, reduced the caspase 3 activity, suggesting the involvement of its kinase activity in apoptosis. Knockdown of SPHK2 significantly reduced caspase 3 activity not only in DENV-infected Huh7 cells but also in DENV-infected HepG2 cells. Our results were consistent across all of the four serotypes of DENV infection, which supports the pro-apoptotic role of SPHK2 in DENV-infected liver cells.
Project description:Dengue virus (DENV) is a member of the Flaviviridae family, transmitted to human via mosquito. DENV infection is common in tropical areas and occasionally causes life-threatening symptoms. DENV contains a relatively short positive-stranded RNA genome, which encodes ten viral proteins. Thus, the viral life cycle is necessarily rely on or regulated by host factors.In silico analyses in conjunction with in vitro kinase assay were used to study kinases that potentially phosphorylate DENV NS5. Potential kinase was inhibited or activated by a specific inhibitor (or siRNA), or an activator. Results of the inhibition and activation on viral entry/replication and host cell survival were examined.Our in silico analyses indicated that the non-structural protein 5 (NS5), especially the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) domain, contains conserved phosphorylation sites for protein kinase C (PKC). Phosphorylation of NS5 RdRp was further verified by PKC in vitro kinase assay. Inhibitions of PKC by a PKC-specific chemical inhibitor or siRNA suppressed NS5 phosphorylation in vivo, increased viral replication and reduced viability of the DENV-infected cells. In contrary, activation of PKC effectively suppressed intracellular viral number.These results indicated that PKC may act as a restricting mechanism that modulates the DENV replication and represses the viral outburst in the host cells.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Dengue virus (DENV) is the causative agent of Dengue fever and the life-threatening Dengue Haemorrhagic fever or Dengue shock syndrome. In the absence of anti-viral agents or vaccine, there is an urgent need to develop an effective anti-viral strategy against this medically important viral pathogen. The initial interplay between DENV and the host cells may represent one of the potential anti-viral targeting sites. Currently the involvements of human membrane trafficking host genes or factors that mediate the infectious cellular entry of dengue virus are not well defined.<h4>Results</h4>In this study, we have used a targeted small interfering RNA (siRNA) library to identify and profile key cellular genes involved in processes of endocytosis, cytoskeletal dynamics and endosome trafficking that are important and essential for DENV infection. The infectious entry of DENV into Huh7 cells was shown to be potently inhibited by siRNAs targeting genes associated with clathrin-mediated endocytosis. The important role of clathrin-mediated endocytosis was confirmed by the expression of well-characterized dominant-negative mutants of genes in this pathway and by using the clathrin endocytosis inhibitor chlorpromazine. Furthermore, DENV infection was shown to be sensitive to the disruption of human genes in regulating the early to late endosomal trafficking as well as the endosomal acidic pH. The importance and involvement of both actin and microtubule dynamics in mediating the infectious entry of DENV was also revealed in this study.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Together, the findings from this study have provided a detail profiling of the human membrane trafficking cellular genes and the mechanistic insight into the interplay of these host genes with DENV to initiate an infection, hence broadening our understanding on the entry pathway of this medically important viral pathogen. These data may also provide a new potential avenue for development of anti-viral strategies and treatment of DENV infection.
Project description:Brome mosaic virus (BMV) protein 1a has multiple key roles in viral RNA replication. 1a localizes to perinuclear endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membranes as a peripheral membrane protein, induces ER membrane invaginations in which RNA replication complexes form, and recruits and stabilizes BMV 2a polymerase (2a(Pol)) and RNA replication templates at these sites to establish active replication complexes. During replication, 1a provides RNA capping, NTPase and possibly RNA helicase functions. Here we identify in BMV 1a an amphipathic alpha-helix, helix A, and use NMR analysis to define its structure and propensity to insert in hydrophobic membrane-mimicking micelles. We show that helix A is essential for efficient 1a-ER membrane association and normal perinuclear ER localization, and that deletion or mutation of helix A abolishes RNA replication. Strikingly, mutations in helix A give rise to two dramatically opposite 1a function phenotypes, implying that helix A acts as a molecular switch regulating the intricate balance between separable 1a functions. One class of helix A deletions and amino acid substitutions markedly inhibits 1a-membrane association and abolishes ER membrane invagination, viral RNA template recruitment, and replication, but doubles the 1a-mediated increase in 2a(Pol) accumulation. The second class of helix A mutations not only maintains efficient 1a-membrane association but also amplifies the number of 1a-induced membrane invaginations 5- to 8-fold and enhances viral RNA template recruitment, while failing to stimulate 2a(Pol) accumulation. The results provide new insights into the pathways of RNA replication complex assembly and show that helix A is critical for assembly and function of the viral RNA replication complex, including its central role in targeting replication components and controlling modes of 1a action.
Project description:Positive-strand RNA viruses are known to rearrange cellular membranes to facilitate viral genome replication. The biogenesis and three-dimensional organization of these membranes and the link between replication and virus assembly sites is not fully clear. Using electron microscopy, we find Dengue virus (DENV)-induced vesicles, convoluted membranes, and virus particles to be endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-derived, and we detect double-stranded RNA, a presumed marker of RNA replication, inside virus-induced vesicles. Electron tomography (ET) shows DENV-induced membrane structures to be part of one ER-derived network. Furthermore, ET reveals vesicle pores that could enable release of newly synthesized viral RNA and reveals budding of DENV particles on ER membranes directly apposed to vesicle pores. Thus, DENV modifies ER membrane structure to promote replication and efficient encapsidation of the genome into progeny virus. This architecture of DENV replication and assembly sites could explain the coordination of distinct steps of the flavivirus replication cycle.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral disease caused by four closely related serotypes of Dengue viruses (DENVs). This disease whose symptoms range from mild fever to potentially fatal haemorrhagic fever and hypovolemic shock, threatens nearly half the global population. There is neither a preventive vaccine nor an effective antiviral therapy against dengue disease. The difference between severe and mild disease appears to be dependent on the viral load. Early diagnosis may enable timely therapeutic intervention to blunt disease severity by reducing the viral load. Harnessing the therapeutic potential of RNA interference (RNAi) to attenuate DENV replication may offer one approach to dengue therapy. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We screened the non-translated regions (NTRs) of the RNA genomes of representative members of the four DENV serotypes for putative siRNA targets mapping to known transcription/translation regulatory elements. We identified a target site in the 5' NTR that maps to the 5' upstream AUG region, a highly conserved cis-acting element essential for viral replication. We used a replication-defective human adenovirus type 5 (AdV5) vector to deliver a short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) targeting this site into cells. We show that this shRNA matures to the cognate siRNA and is able to inhibit effectively antigen secretion, viral RNA replication and infectious virus production by all four DENV serotypes. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The data demonstrate the feasibility of using AdV5-mediated delivery of shRNAs targeting conserved sites in the viral genome to achieve inhibition of all four DENV serotypes. This paves the way towards exploration of RNAi as a possible therapeutic strategy to curtail DENV infection.