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J Virol. 2012 May;86(9):4743-51. doi: 10.1128/JVI.06501-11. Epub 2012 Feb 15.

Hsp70 protein positively regulates rabies virus infection.

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CNRS, UPR 3296 Virologie Moléculaire et Structurale, Gif sur Yvette, France.


The Hsp70 chaperone plays a central role in multiple processes within cells, including protein translation, folding, intracellular trafficking, and degradation. This protein is implicated in the replication of numerous viruses. We have shown that rabies virus infection induced the cellular expression of Hsp70, which accumulated in Negri body-like structures, where viral transcription and replication take place. In addition, Hsp70 is present in both nucleocapsids purified from infected cells and in purified virions. Hsp70 has been shown to interact with the nucleoprotein N. The downregulation of Hsp70, using specific chaperone inhibitors, such as quercetin or RNA interference, resulted in a significant decrease of the amount of viral mRNAs, viral proteins, and virus particles. These results indicate that Hsp70 has a proviral function during rabies virus infection and suggest that Hsp70 is involved in at least one stage(s) of the viral life cycle, such as viral transcription, translation, and/or production. The mechanism by which Hsp70 controls viral infection will be discussed.

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