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Trends Microbiol. 2012 Aug;20(8):392-401. doi: 10.1016/j.tim.2012.04.008. Epub 2012 May 23.

Viral and host control of cytomegalovirus maturation.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Emory Vaccine Center, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.


Maturation in herpesviruses initiates in the nucleus of the infected cell, with encapsidation of viral DNA to form nucleocapsids, and concludes with envelopment in the cytoplasm to form infectious virions that egress the cell. The entire process of virus maturation is orchestrated by protein-protein interactions and enzymatic activities of viral and host origin. Viral tegument proteins play important roles in maintaining the structural stability of capsids and directing the acquisition of virus envelope. Envelopment occurs at modified host membranes and exploits host vesicular trafficking. In this review, we summarize current knowledge of and concepts in human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) maturation and their parallels in other herpesviruses, with an emphasis on viral and host factors that regulate this process.

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