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J Virol. 1996 Oct;70(10):6767-74.

Dynamic phosphorylation of Autographa californica nuclear polyhedrosis virus pp31.

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Department of Entomology, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843, USA.


Autographa californica nuclear polyhedrosis virus (AcMNPV) pp31 is a nuclear phosphoprotein that accumulates in the virogenic stroma, which is the viral replication center in the infected-cell nucleus, binds to DNA, and serves as a late expression factor. Considering that reversible phosphorylation could influence its functional properties, we examined phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of pp31 in detail. Our results showed that pp31 is posttranslationally phosphorylated by both cellular and virus-encoded or -induced kinases. Threonine phosphorylation of pp31 by the virus-specific kinase activity was sensitive to aphidicolin, indicating that it requires late viral gene expression. We also found that pp31 is dephosphorylated by a virus-encoded or -induced phosphatase(s), indicating that phosphorylation of pp31 is a dynamic process. Analysis of pp31 fusion proteins showed that pp31 contains at least three phosphorylation sites. The amino-terminal 100 amino acids of pp31 include at least one serine residue that is phosphorylated by a cellular kinase(s). The C-terminal 67 amino acids of pp31 include at least one threonine residue that is phosphorylated by the virus-specific kinase(s). Finally, this C-terminal domain of pp31 includes at least one serine that is phosphorylated by either a host or viral kinase(s). Interestingly, site-directed mutagenesis of the consensus threonine phosphorylation sites in the C-terminal domain of pp31 failed to prevent threonine phosphorylation, suggesting that the virus-specific kinase is unique and has an undetermined recognition site.

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