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Viruses. 2011 Mar;3(3):260-71. doi: 10.3390/v3030260. Epub 2011 Mar 10.

The cytoskeleton in papillomavirus infection.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, 1501 Kings Highway, Shreveport, LA 71130, USA.


Cytoskeleton defines the shape and structural organization of the cell. Its elements participate in cell motility, intracellular transport and chromosome movement during mitosis. Papillomaviruses (PV) are strictly epitheliotropic and induce self-limiting benign tumors of skin and mucosa, which may progress to malignancy. Like many other viruses, PV use the host cytoskeletal components for several steps during their life cycle. Prior to internalization, PV particles are transported along filopodia to the cell body. Following internalization, retrograde transport along microtubules via the dynein motor protein complex is observed. In addition, viral minichromosomes depend on the host cell machinery for partitioning of viral genomes during mitosis, which may be affected by oncoproteins E6 and E7 of high-risk human PV types. This mini-review summarizes recent advances in our understanding of papillomavirus' interactions with the host cell cytoskeletal elements.


actin; cytoskeleton; microtubule; papillomavirus; virus entry

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