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PLoS Pathog. 2011 Jul;7(7):e1002127. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1002127. Epub 2011 Jul 14.

Re-localization of cellular protein SRp20 during poliovirus infection: bridging a viral IRES to the host cell translation apparatus.

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Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, School of Medicine, University of California, Irvine, California, United States of America.


Poliovirus IRES-mediated translation requires the functions of certain canonical as well as non-canonical factors for the recruitment of ribosomes to the viral RNA. The interaction of cellular proteins PCBP2 and SRp20 in extracts from poliovirus-infected cells has been previously described, and these two proteins were shown to function synergistically in viral translation. To further define the mechanism of ribosome recruitment for the initiation of poliovirus IRES-dependent translation, we focused on the role of the interaction between cellular proteins PCBP2 and SRp20. Work described here demonstrates that SRp20 dramatically re-localizes from the nucleus to the cytoplasm of poliovirus-infected neuroblastoma cells during the course of infection. Importantly, SRp20 partially co-localizes with PCBP2 in the cytoplasm of infected cells, corroborating our previous in vitro interaction data. In addition, the data presented implicate the presence of these two proteins in viral translation initiation complexes. We show that in extracts from poliovirus-infected cells, SRp20 is associated with PCBP2 bound to poliovirus RNA, indicating that this interaction occurs on the viral RNA. Finally, we generated a mutated version of SRp20 lacking the RNA recognition motif (SRp20ΔRRM) and found that this protein is localized similar to the full length SRp20, and also partially co-localizes with PCBP2 during poliovirus infection. Expression of this mutated version of SRp20 results in a ∼100 fold decrease in virus yield for poliovirus when compared to expression of wild type SRp20, possibly via a dominant negative effect. Taken together, these results are consistent with a model in which SRp20 interacts with PCBP2 bound to the viral RNA, and this interaction functions to recruit ribosomes to the viral RNA in a direct or indirect manner, with the participation of additional protein-protein or protein-RNA interactions.

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