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NLM AIDSLINE
Human T-cell leukemia virus type 2 Rex protein increases stability and promotes nuclear to cytoplasmic transport of gag/pol and env RNAs.
Kusuhara K; Anderson M; Pettiford SM; Green PL; Department of
December 30, 1999
J Virol. 1999 Oct;73(10):8112-9. Unique Identifier : AIDSLINE

The human T-cell leukemia virus (HTLV) Rex protein is essential for efficient expression of the viral structural and enzymatic gene products. In this study, we assessed the role of the HTLV-2 rex gene in viral RNA expression and Gag protein production. Following transfection of human JM4 T cells with wild-type and rex mutant full-length proviral constructs, PCR was used for semiquantitative analysis of specific viral RNA transcripts. In the presence of Rex, the total amount of steady-state viral RNA was increased fourfold. Rex significantly up-regulated the level of incompletely spliced RNAs by increasing RNA stability and was associated with a twofold down-regulation of the completely spliced tax/rex RNA. PCR analysis of subcellular RNA fractions, isolated from transfected cells, indicated that the level of gag/pol and env cytoplasmic RNAs were increased 7- to 9-fold in the presence of Rex, whereas Gag protein production was increased 130-fold. These data indicate that HTLV-2 Rex increases the stability and promotes nucleus-to-cytoplasm transport of the incompletely spliced viral RNAs, ultimately resulting in increased structural protein production. Moreover, this model system provides a sensitive approach to further characterize HTLV gene expression from full-length proviral clones following transfection of human T cells.

JOURNAL ARTICLE B-Lymphocytes/VIROLOGY Biological Transport Cell Line Cell Nucleus/VIROLOGY Cytoplasm/VIROLOGY Gene Products, gag/*PHYSIOLOGY Gene Products, pol/*PHYSIOLOGY Gene Products, rex/*PHYSIOLOGY Human HTLV-II/*PHYSIOLOGY RNA, Viral/*PHYSIOLOGY Support, Non-U.S. Gov't Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. T-Lymphocytes/VIROLOGY Viral Envelope Proteins/*PHYSIOLOGY Virus Replication

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