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Microbes Infect. 2003 Sep;5(11):1029-39.

The HIV-1 Vpu protein: a multifunctional enhancer of viral particle release.

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Bioinformatics Core Facility, Laboratory of Molecular Microbiology, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, 4, Center Drive, Room 337, Bethesda, MD 20892-0460, USA.


HIV accessory genes are expressed throughout the viral life cycle and regulate wide-ranging aspects of virus replication including viral infectivity (Vif and Nef), viral gene expression (Vpr) and progeny virion production (Vpu). While in many cases the molecular basis of accessory protein function is not fully understood, a consensus is emerging that these viral products are generally devoid of enzymatic activity and instead act as multifunctional adapters, subverting normal cellular processes to serve the needs of the virus. This review focuses on presenting our current knowledge of the HIV-1-specific Vpu protein and its essential role in regulating viral particle release, viral load and expression of the CD4 receptor.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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