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Arch Virol. 2005 Aug;150(8):1579-90. Epub 2005 Mar 24.

HBx protein of hepatitis B virus (HBV) can form complex with mitochondrial HSP60 and HSP70.

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Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine, Beijing, P.R. China.


HBx, a transcriptional transactivating protein of hepatitis B virus (HBV), is required for viral infection and has been implicated in virus-mediated liver oncogenesis. However, the molecular mechanism for its influence on cell remains largely unknown. It was proved that HBx need the help of host cell proteins to exert its function by binding to them. During purifying of GSTX (fusion protein of GST and HBx) expressed in E. coli, we found that it can bind specifically with GrpE (HSP60) and DnaK (HSP70) of E. coli while GST cannot. Using GST pull-down, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and mass spectrum, we found that GSTX can also bind to human mitochondrial HSP60 and HSP70, which are homologues of GrpE and DnaK. These interactions between HBx and mitochondrial HSP60 and HSP70 are supported by the result of co-immunoprecipitation experiment. It means that HBx can form complex with E. coli and human HSP60 and HSP70. The implication of HBx, HSP60 and HSP70 complex in molecular mechanism of virus infection is discussed.

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