ABSTRACT: CCR5 plays immune functions and is the coreceptor for R5 HIV-1 strains. It exists in diverse conformations and oligomerization states. We interrogated the significance of the CCR5 structural diversity on HIV-1 infection. We show that envelope glycoproteins (gp120s) from different HIV-1 strains exhibit divergent binding levels to CCR5 on cell lines and primary cells, but not to CD4 or the CD4i monoclonal antibody E51. This owed to differential binding of the gp120s to different CCR5 populations, which exist in varying quantities at the cell surface and are differentially expressed between different cell types. Some, but not all, of these populations are antigenically distinct conformations of the coreceptor. The different binding levels of gp120s also correspond to differences in their capacity to bind CCR5 dimers/oligomers. Mutating the CCR5 dimerization interface changed conformation of the CCR5 homodimers and modulated differentially the binding of distinct gp120s. Env-pseudotyped viruses also use particular CCR5 conformations for entry, which may differ between different viruses and represent a subset of those binding gp120s. In particular, even if gp120s can bind both CCR5 monomers and oligomers, impairment of CCR5 oligomerization improved viral entry, suggesting that HIV-1 prefers monomers for entry. From a functional standpoint, we illustrate that the nature of the CCR5 molecules to which gp120/HIV-1 binds shapes sensitivity to inhibition by CCR5 ligands and cellular tropism. Differences exist in the CCR5 populations between T-cells and macrophages, and this is associated with differential capacity to bind gp120s and to support viral entry. In macrophages, CCR5 structural plasticity is critical for entry of blood-derived R5 isolates, which, in contrast to prototypical M-tropic strains from brain tissues, cannot benefit from enhanced affinity for CD4. Collectively, our results support a role for CCR5 heterogeneity in diversifying the phenotypic properties of HIV-1 isolates and provide new clues for development of CCR5-targeting drugs.
Project description:CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) is a receptor for chemokines and the coreceptor for R5 HIV-1 entry into CD4(+) T lymphocytes. Chemokines exert anti-HIV-1 activity in vitro, both by displacing the viral envelope glycoprotein gp120 from binding to CCR5 and by promoting CCR5 endocytosis, suggesting that they play a protective role in HIV infection. However, we showed here that different CCR5 conformations at the cell surface are differentially engaged by chemokines and gp120, making chemokines weaker inhibitors of HIV infection than would be expected from their binding affinity constants for CCR5. These distinct CCR5 conformations rely on CCR5 coupling to nucleotide-free G proteins ((NF)G proteins). Whereas native CCR5 chemokines bind with subnanomolar affinity to (NF)G protein-coupled CCR5, gp120/HIV-1 does not discriminate between (NF)G protein-coupled and uncoupled CCR5. Interestingly, the antiviral activity of chemokines is G protein independent, suggesting that "low-chemokine affinity" (NF)G protein-uncoupled conformations of CCR5 represent a portal for viral entry. Furthermore, chemokines are weak inducers of CCR5 endocytosis, as is revealed by EC50 values for chemokine-mediated endocytosis reflecting their low-affinity constant value for (NF)G protein-uncoupled CCR5. Abolishing CCR5 interaction with (NF)G proteins eliminates high-affinity binding of CCR5 chemokines but preserves receptor endocytosis, indicating that chemokines preferentially endocytose low-affinity receptors. Finally, we evidenced that chemokine analogs achieve highly potent HIV-1 inhibition due to high-affinity interactions with internalizing and/or gp120-binding receptors. These data are consistent with HIV-1 evading chemokine inhibition by exploiting CCR5 conformational heterogeneity, shed light into the inhibitory mechanisms of anti-HIV-1 chemokine analogs, and provide insights for the development of unique anti-HIV molecules.
Project description:Aminooxypentane (AOP)-RANTES efficiently and specifically blocks entry of non-syncytium-inducing (NSI), CCR5-tropic (R5) human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) into host cells. Inhibition appears to be mediated by increased intracellular retention of the CCR5 coreceptor- AOP-RANTES complex and/or competitive binding of AOP-RANTES with NSI R5 HIV-1 isolates for CCR5. Although AOP-RANTES and other beta-chemokine analogs are potent inhibitors, the extreme heterogeneity of the HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins (gp120 and gp41) and variable coreceptor usage may affect the susceptibility of variant HIV-1 strains to these drugs. Using the same peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) with all isolates, we observed a significant variation in AOP-RANTES inhibition of 13 primary NSI R5 isolates; 50% inhibitory concentrations (IC(50)) ranged from 0.04 nM with HIV-1(A-92RW009) to 1.3 nM with HIV-1(B-BaL). Experiments performed on the same isolate (HIV-1(B-BaL)) with PBMC from different donors revealed no isolate-specific variation in AOP-RANTES IC(50) values but did show a considerable difference in virus replication efficiency. Exclusive entry via the CCR5 coreceptor by these NSI R5 isolates suggests that variable inhibition by AOP-RANTES is not due to alternative coreceptor usage but rather differential CCR5 binding. Analysis of the envelope V3 loop sequence linked a threonine or arginine at position 319 (numbering based on the HXB2 genome) with AOP-RANTES resistance. With the exception of one isolate, A319 was associated with increased sensitivity to AOP-RANTES inhibition. Distribution of AOP-RANTES IC(50) values with these isolates has promoted ongoing screens for new CCR5 agonists that show broad inhibition of HIV-1 variants.
Project description:CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) is a G-protein-coupled receptor for the chemokines CCL3, -4, and -5 and a coreceptor for entry of R5-tropic strains of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) into CD4(+) T-cells. We investigated the mechanisms whereby nonpeptidic, low molecular weight CCR5 ligands block HIV-1 entry and infection. Displacement binding assays and dissociation kinetics demonstrated that two of these molecules, i.e. TAK779 and maraviroc (MVC), inhibit CCL3 and the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein gp120 binding to CCR5 by a noncompetitive and allosteric mechanism, supporting the view that they bind to regions of CCR5 distinct from the gp120- and CCL3-binding sites. We observed that TAK779 and MVC are full and weak inverse agonists for CCR5, respectively, indicating that they stabilize distinct CCR5 conformations with impaired abilities to activate G-proteins. Dissociation of [(125)I]CCL3 from CCR5 was accelerated by TAK779, to a lesser extent by MVC, and by GTP analogs, suggesting that inverse agonism contributes to allosteric inhibition of the chemokine binding to CCR5. TAK779 and MVC also promote dissociation of [(35)S]gp120 from CCR5 with an efficiency that correlates with their ability to act as inverse agonists. Displacement experiments revealed that affinities of MVC and TAK779 for the [(35)S]gp120-binding receptors are in the same range (IC(50) ?6.4 versus 22 nm), although we found that MVC is 100-fold more potent than TAK779 for inhibiting HIV infection. This suggests that allosteric CCR5 inhibitors not only act by blocking gp120 binding but also alter distinct steps of CCR5 usage in the course of HIV infection.
Project description:To initiate HIV entry, the HIV envelope protein gp120 must engage its primary receptor CD4 and a coreceptor CCR5 or CXCR4. In the absence of a high resolution structure of a gp120-coreceptor complex, biochemical studies of CCR5 have revealed the importance of its N terminus and second extracellular loop (ECL2) in binding gp120 and mediating viral entry. Using a panel of synthetic CCR5 ECL2-derived peptides, we show that the C-terminal portion of ECL2 (2C, comprising amino acids Cys-178 to Lys-191) inhibit HIV-1 entry of both CCR5- and CXCR4-using isolates at low micromolar concentrations. In functional viral assays, these peptides inhibited HIV-1 entry in a CD4-independent manner. Neutralization assays designed to measure the effects of CCR5 ECL2 peptides when combined with either with the small molecule CD4 mimetic NBD-556, soluble CD4, or the CCR5 N terminus showed additive inhibition for each, indicating that ECL2 binds gp120 at a site distinct from that of N terminus and acts independently of CD4. Using saturation transfer difference NMR, we determined the region of CCR5 ECL2 used for binding gp120, showed that it can bind to gp120 from both R5 and X4 isolates, and demonstrated that the peptide interacts with a CD4-gp120 complex in a similar manner as to gp120 alone. As the CCR5 N terminus-gp120 interactions are dependent on CD4 activation, our data suggest that gp120 has separate binding sites for the CCR5 N terminus and ECL2, the ECL2 binding site is present prior to CD4 engagement, and it is conserved across CCR5- and CXCR4-using strains. These peptides may serve as a starting point for the design of inhibitors with broad spectrum anti-HIV activity.
Project description:While CCR5 is the principal coreceptor used by macrophage (M)-tropic HIV-1, not all primary CCR5-using (R5) viruses enter macrophages efficiently. Here, we used functionally-diverse R5 envelope (Env) clones to characterize virus-cell interactions important for efficient CCR5-mediated macrophage entry. The magnitude of macrophage entry by Env-pseudotyped reporter viruses correlated with increased immunoreactivity of CD4-induced gp120 epitopes, increased ability to scavenge low levels of cell-surface CCR5, reduced sensitivity to the CCR5 inhibitor maraviroc, and increased dependence on specific residues in the CCR5 ECL2 region. These results are consistent with an altered and more efficient mechanism of CCR5 engagement. Structural studies revealed potential alterations within the gp120 V3 loop, the gp41 interaction sites at the gp120 C- and N-termini, and within the gp120 CD4 binding site which may directly or indirectly lead to more efficient CCR5-usage. Thus, enhanced gp120-CCR5 interactions may contribute to M-tropism of R5 HIV-1 strains through different structural mechanisms.
Project description:Reduced expression of CCR5 on target CD4(+) cells lowers their susceptibility to infection by R5-tropic HIV-1, potentially preventing transmission of infection and delaying disease progression. Binding of the HIV-1 envelope (Env) protein gp120 with CCR5 is essential for the entry of R5 viruses into target cells. The threshold surface density of gp120-CCR5 complexes that enables HIV-1 entry remains poorly estimated. We constructed a mathematical model that mimics Env-mediated cell-cell fusion assays, where target CD4(+)CCR5(+) cells are exposed to effector cells expressing Env in the presence of a coreceptor antagonist and the fraction of target cells fused with effector cells is measured. Our model employs a reaction network-based approach to describe protein interactions that precede viral entry coupled with the ternary complex model to quantify the allosteric interactions of the coreceptor antagonist and predicts the fraction of target cells fused. By fitting model predictions to published data of cell-cell fusion in the presence of the CCR5 antagonist vicriviroc, we estimated the threshold surface density of gp120-CCR5 complexes for cell-cell fusion as ?20 µm(-2). Model predictions with this threshold captured data from independent cell-cell fusion assays in the presence of vicriviroc and rapamycin, a drug that modulates CCR5 expression, as well as assays in the presence of maraviroc, another CCR5 antagonist, using sixteen different Env clones derived from transmitted or early founder viruses. Our estimate of the threshold surface density of gp120-CCR5 complexes necessary for HIV-1 entry thus appears robust and may have implications for optimizing treatment with coreceptor antagonists, understanding the non-pathogenic infection of non-human primates, and designing vaccines that suppress the availability of target CD4(+)CCR5(+) cells.
Project description:An increasingly large number of antiviral agents that prevent entry of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) into cells are in preclinical and clinical development. The envelope (Env) protein of HIV is the major viral determinant that affects sensitivity to these compounds. To understand how changes in Env can impact entry inhibitor sensitivity, we introduced six mutations into the conserved coreceptor binding site of the R5 HIV-1 strain YU-2 and measured the effect of these changes on CD4 and coreceptor binding, membrane fusion levels and rates, virus infection, and sensitivity to the fusion inhibitors enfuvirtide (T-20) and T-1249, the CCR5 inhibitor TAK-779, and an antibody to CD4. The mutations had little effect on CD4 binding but reduced CCR5 binding to various extents. In general, reductions in coreceptor binding efficiency resulted in slower fusion kinetics and increased sensitivity to TAK-779 and enfuvirtide. In addition, low CCR5 binding usually reduced overall fusion and infection levels. However, one mutation adjacent to the bridging sheet beta21 strand, P438A, had little effect on fusion activity, fusion rate, infectivity, or sensitivity to enfuvirtide or T-1249 despite causing a marked reduction in CCR5 binding and a significant increase in TAK-779 sensitivity. Thus, our findings indicate that changes in the coreceptor binding site of Env can modulate its fusion activity, infectivity, and entry inhibitor sensitivity by multiple mechanisms and suggest that reductions in coreceptor binding do not always result in prolonged fusion kinetics and increased sensitivity to enfuvirtide.
Project description:Specific amino acids within the V3 loop of HIV-1 CRF01_AE envelope glycoprotein that are involved in the interaction with CCR5/CXCR4 coreceptors, are not well characterized. We generated V3 mutants using polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based site-directed mutagenesis of HIV-1 CRF01_AE R5-env plasmids at specific positions. Mutant viruses were produced by env-pseudotyped virus assay, tested for coreceptor usage using U373.R5 and U373.X4 cells, and viral entry was assessed with luciferase activity measurement. All viruses, harboring either single or double mutations, used the CCR5 coreceptor. However, those containing a single substitution at positions 7, 11, 18, and 32 and those with mutations at positions 5/32 and 18/32 had reduced infectivity. Only virus with arginine substitution at position 11 seemed to be involved in CXCR4 coreceptor usage. Our results suggest that some V3 positions may be necessary for the binding to coreceptor, but not for the switch of coreceptor usage.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) subtype C (C-HIV) is spreading rapidly and is now responsible for >50% of HIV-1 infections worldwide, and >95% of infections in southern Africa and central Asia. These regions are burdened with the overwhelming majority of HIV-1 infections, yet we know very little about the pathogenesis of C-HIV. In addition to CCR5 and CXCR4, the HIV-1 envelope glycoproteins (Env) may engage a variety of alternative coreceptors for entry into transfected cells. Whilst alternative coreceptors do not appear to have a broad role in mediating the entry of HIV-1 into primary cells, characterizing patterns of alternative coreceptor usage in vitro can provide valuable insights into mechanisms of Env-coreceptor engagement that may be important for HIV-1 pathogenesis. RESULTS: Here, we characterized the ability of luciferase reporter viruses pseudotyped with HIV-1 Envs (n = 300) cloned sequentially from plasma of 21 antiretroviral therapy (ART)-naïve subjects experiencing progression from chronic to advanced C-HIV infection over an approximately 3-year period, who either exclusively maintained CCR5-using (R5) variants (n = 20 subjects) or who experienced a coreceptor switch to CXCR4-using (X4) variants (n = 1 subject), to utilize alternative coreceptors for entry. At a population level, CCR5 usage by R5 C-HIV Envs was strongly linked to usage of FPRL1, CCR3 and CCR8 as alternative coreceptors, with the linkages to FPRL1 and CCR3 usage becoming statistically more robust as infection progressed from chronic to advanced stages of disease. In contrast, acquisition of an X4 Env phenotype at advanced infection was accompanied by a dramatic loss of FPRL1 usage. Env mutagenesis studies confirmed a direct link between CCR5 and FPRL1 usage, and showed that the V3 loop crown, but not other V3 determinants of CCR5-specificity, was the principal Env determinant governing the ability of R5 C-HIV Envs from one particular subject to engage FPRL1. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that, in the absence of coreceptor switching, the ability of R5 C-HIV viruses to engage certain alternative coreceptors in vitro, in particular FPRL1, may reflect an altered use of CCR5 that is selected for during progressive C-HIV infection, and which may contribute to C-HIV pathogenicity.
Project description:The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) V3 loop is essential for coreceptor binding and principally determines tropism for the CCR5 and CXCR4 coreceptors. Using the dual-tropic virus HIV-1(R3A), we previously made an extensive panel of V3 deletions and identified subdomains within V3 that could differentially mediate R5 and X4 tropism. A deletion of residues 9 to 12 on the N-terminal side of the V3 stem ablated X4 tropism while leaving R5 tropism intact. This mutation also resulted in complete resistance to several small-molecule CCR5 inhibitors. Here, we extend these studies to further characterize a variant of this mutant, Delta9-12a, adapted for growth in CCR5(+) SupT1 cells. Studies using coreceptor chimeras, monoclonal antibodies directed against the CCR5 amino terminus (NT) and extracellular loops, and CCR5 point mutants revealed that, relative to parental R3A, R5-tropic Delta9-12a was more dependent on the CCR5 NT, a region that contacts the gp120 bridging sheet and V3 base. Neutralization sensitivity assays showed that, compared to parental R3A, Delta9-12a was more sensitive to monoclonal antibodies b12, 4E10, and 2G12. Finally, cross-antagonism assays showed that Delta9-12a could use aplaviroc-bound CCR5 for entry. These studies indicate that increased dependence on the CCR5 NT represents a mechanism by which HIV envelopes acquire resistance to CCR5 antagonists and may have more general implications for mechanisms of drug resistance that arise in vivo. In addition, envelopes such as Delta9-12a may be useful for developing new entry inhibitors that target the interaction of gp120 and the CCR5 NT.