Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Virol. 2006 Aug;80(16):7844-53.

A conserved Gly436-Trp-Leu-Ala-Gly-Leu-Phe-Tyr motif in hepatitis C virus glycoprotein E2 is a determinant of CD81 binding and viral entry.

Author information

  • 1The Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research and Public Health Ltd., GPO Box 2284, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia 3001.


The hepatitis C virus (HCV) glycoproteins E1 and E2 form a heterodimer that mediates CD81 receptor binding and viral entry. In this study, we used site-directed mutagenesis to examine the functional role of a conserved G436WLAGLFY motif of E2. The mutants could be placed into two groups based on the ability of mature virion-incorporated E1E2 to bind the large extracellular loop (LEL) of CD81 versus the ability to mediate cellular entry of pseudotyped retroviral particles. Group 1 comprised E2 mutants where LEL binding ability largely correlated with viral entry ability, with conservative and nonconservative substitutions (W437 L/A, L438A, L441V/F, and F442A) inhibiting both functions. These data suggest that Trp-437, Leu-438, Leu-441, and Phe-442 directly interact with the LEL. Group 2 comprised E2 glycoproteins with more conservative substitutions that lacked LEL binding but retained between 20% and 60% of wild-type viral entry competence. The viral entry competence displayed by group 2 mutants was explained by residual binding by the E2 receptor binding domain to cellular full-length CD81. A subset of mutants maintained LEL binding ability in the context of intracellular E1E2 forms, but this function was largely lost in virion-incorporated glycoproteins. These data suggest that the CD81 binding site undergoes a conformational transition during glycoprotein maturation through the secretory pathway. The G436P mutant was an outlier, retaining near-wild-type levels of CD81 binding but lacking significant viral entry ability. These findings indicate that the G436WLAGLFY motif of E2 functions in CD81 binding and in pre- or post-CD81-dependent stages of viral entry.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk