Phylogenetic Analysis of Vpx/Vpr Expression
Sakai, Yosuke Tokushima University
Sasada, Hikari Tokushima University
Viruses of human immunodeficiency virus type 2 (HIV-2) and some simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) lineages carry a unique accessory protein called Vpx. Vpx is essential or critical for viral replication in natural target cells such as macrophages and T lymphocytes. We have previously shown that a poly-proline motif (PPM) located at the C-terminal region of Vpx is required for its efficient expression in two strains of HIV-2 and SIVmac, and that the Vpx expression levels of the two clones are significantly different. Notably, the PPM sequence is conserved and confined to Vpx and Vpr proteins derived from certain lineages of HIV-2/SIVs. In this study, Vpx/Vpr proteins from diverse primate lentiviral lineages were experimentally and phylogenetically analyzed to obtain the general expression picture in cells. While both the level and PPM-dependency of Vpx/Vpr expression in transfected cells varied among viral strains, each viral group, based on Vpx/Vpr amino acid sequences, was found to exhibit a characteristic expression profile. Moreover, phylogenetic tree analyses on Gag and Vpx/Vpr proteins gave essentially the same results. Taken together, our study described here suggests that each primate lentiviral lineage may have developed a unique expression pattern of Vpx/Vpr proteins for adaptation to its hostile cellular and species environments in the process of viral evolution.
Frontiers in Microbiology
Frontiers Media S.A.
Copyright ©2016 Sakai, Miyake, Doi, Sasada, Miyazaki, Adachi and Nomaguchi. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CCBY). (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
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