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Virus Res. 2001 Sep;77(1):61-9.

Transport of viral proteins to the apical membranes and interaction of matrix protein with glycoproteins in the assembly of influenza viruses.

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Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics, Molecular Biology Institute, School of Medicine, University of California, 90095-1747, Los Angeles, CA, USA.


Influenza virus assembly and morphogenesis require transport of viral components to the assembly site at the apical plasma membrane of polarized epithelial cells and interaction among the viral components. In this report we have discussed the apical determinants present in the transmembrane domain (TMD) of influenza virus hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA), and the interaction of M1 with influenza virus HA and NA. Earlier studies have shown that the NA and HA TMDs possess determinant(s) for apical sorting and raft-association (Kundu et al., 1996. J. Virol 70, 6508-6515; Lin et al., 1998. J. Cell Biol. 142, 51-57). Analysis of chimeric constructs between NA and TR (human transferring receptor) TMDs and the mutations in the NA and HA TMD sequences showed that the COOH terminus of the NA TMD and NH(2) terminus of the HA TMD encompassing the exoplasmic leaflet of the lipid bilayers were significantly involved in lipid raft-association and that apical determinants were not discrete sequences but rather dispersed within the TMD of HA and NA. These analyses also showed that although both signals for apical sorting and raft-association resided in the NA TMD, they were not identical and varied independently. Interactions of M1 protein with HA or NA, the influenza virus envelope glycoproteins, were investigated by TX-100 detergent treatment of membrane fractions and floatation in sucrose gradients. Results from these analyses showed that the interaction of M1 with mature HA and NA, which associated with the detergent-resistant lipid rafts caused an increased detergent-resistance of the membrane-bound M1 and that M1 interacted with HA and NA both in influenza virus-infected cells as well as in recombinant vaccinia virus-infected cells coexpressing M1 with HA and/or NA. Furthermore, both the cytoplasmic tail and the TMD of HA caused an increased detergent-resistance of the membrane-bound M1 supporting their interaction with M1. Immunofluorescence analysis by confocal microscopy also showed colocalization supporting the interaction of M1 with HA and NA at the cell surface and during exocytic transport both in influenza virus-infected cells as well as in coexpressing cells.

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