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Virus Res. 2012 Nov;169(2):349-60. doi: 10.1016/j.virusres.2012.06.021. Epub 2012 Jun 26.

Comparative nucleic acid chaperone properties of the nucleocapsid protein NCp7 and Tat protein of HIV-1.

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Laboratoire de Biophotonique et Pharmacologie, Faculté de Pharmacie, UMR 7213 CNRS, Université de Strasbourg, 67401 Illkirch, France.


RNA chaperones are proteins able to rearrange nucleic acid structures towards their most stable conformations. In retroviruses, the reverse transcription of the viral RNA requires multiple and complex nucleic acid rearrangements that need to be chaperoned. HIV-1 has evolved different viral-encoded proteins with chaperone activity, notably Tat and the well described nucleocapsid protein NCp7. We propose here an overview of the recent reports that examine and compare the nucleic acid chaperone properties of Tat and NCp7 during reverse transcription to illustrate the variety of mechanisms of action of the nucleic acid chaperone proteins.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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