Send to

Choose Destination
PLoS Pathog. 2018 Jan 8;14(1):e1006769. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1006769. eCollection 2018 Jan.

Distinct temporal roles for the promyelocytic leukaemia (PML) protein in the sequential regulation of intracellular host immunity to HSV-1 infection.

Author information

MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research (CVR), Garscube Campus, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom.
Department of Medical Laboratory Technology, Faculty of Applied Medical Sciences, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Department of Biochemistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada.


Detection of viral nucleic acids plays a critical role in the induction of intracellular host immune defences. However, the temporal recruitment of immune regulators to infecting viral genomes remains poorly defined due to the technical difficulties associated with low genome copy-number detection. Here we utilize 5-Ethynyl-2'-deoxyuridine (EdU) labelling of herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) DNA in combination with click chemistry to examine the sequential recruitment of host immune regulators to infecting viral genomes under low multiplicity of infection conditions. Following viral genome entry into the nucleus, PML-nuclear bodies (PML-NBs) rapidly entrapped viral DNA (vDNA) leading to a block in viral replication in the absence of the viral PML-NB antagonist ICP0. This pre-existing intrinsic host defence to infection occurred independently of the vDNA pathogen sensor IFI16 (Interferon Gamma Inducible Protein 16) and the induction of interferon stimulated gene (ISG) expression, demonstrating that vDNA entry into the nucleus alone is not sufficient to induce a robust innate immune response. Saturation of this pre-existing intrinsic host defence during HSV-1 ICP0-null mutant infection led to the stable recruitment of PML and IFI16 into vDNA complexes associated with ICP4, and led to the induction of ISG expression. This induced innate immune response occurred in a PML-, IFI16-, and Janus-Associated Kinase (JAK)-dependent manner and was restricted by phosphonoacetic acid, demonstrating that vDNA polymerase activity is required for the robust induction of ISG expression during HSV-1 infection. Our data identifies dual roles for PML in the sequential regulation of intrinsic and innate immunity to HSV-1 infection that are dependent on viral genome delivery to the nucleus and the onset of vDNA replication, respectively. These intracellular host defences are counteracted by ICP0, which targets PML for degradation from the outset of nuclear infection to promote vDNA release from PML-NBs and the onset of HSV-1 lytic replication.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Publication type, MeSH terms, Substances, Grant support

Publication type

MeSH terms


Grant support

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Public Library of Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center