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Biochem Pharmacol. 2012 Dec 1;84(11):1400-8. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2012.07.034. Epub 2012 Aug 8.

The role of phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases and phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate during viral replication.

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Rega Institute for Medical Research, KU Leuven, Belgium.


Phosphoinositides (PI) are phospholipids that mediate signaling cascades in the cell by binding to effector proteins. Reversible phosphorylation of the inositol ring at positions 3, 4 and 5 results in the synthesis of seven different phosphoinositides. Each phosphoinositide has a unique subcellular distribution with a predominant localization in subsets of membranes. These lipids play a major role in recruiting and regulating the function of proteins at membrane interfaces [1]. Several bacteria and viruses modulate and exploit the host PI metabolism to ensure efficient replication and survival. Here, we focus on the roles of cellular phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate (PI4P) and phosphatidylinositol 4-kinases (PI4Ks) during the replication cycle of various viruses. It has been well documented that phosphatidylinositol 4-kinase IIIβ (PI4KIIIβ, EC is indispensable for viral RNA replication of several picornaviruses. Two recruitment strategies were reported: (i) binding and modulation of GBF1/Arf1 to enhance recruitment of PI4KIIIβ and (ii) interaction with ACBD3 for recruitment of PI4KIIIβ. PI4KIII has also been demonstrated to be crucial for hepatitis C virus (HCV) replication. PI4KIII appears to be directly recruited and activated by HCV NS5A protein to the replication complexes. In contrast to picornaviruses, it is still debated whether the α or the β isoform is the most important. PI4KIII can be explored as a target for inhibition of viral replication. The challenge will be to develop highly selective inhibitors for PI4KIIIα and/or β and to avoid off-target toxicity.

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