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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2001 May 11;283(3):668-73.

alpha(6) Integrin is the main receptor of human papillomavirus type 16 VLP.

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Genome Research Center, Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Taejeon, 305-600, Korea.


The present study was performed to determine the specific receptor of type HPV-16 using recombinant human papillomavirus-like particle (HPV-16 L1-VLP). The expression levels of alpha(6), beta(1), and beta(4) integrins were determined and compared with the amount of HPV-VLP binding in ten cell lines by flow cytometry. Our results show that the amount of VLP binding and the expression level of alpha(6) integrin are correlated, which was confirmed by an inhibition experiment using antibodies and by immunocytochemistry. Both the expression level of alpha(6) integrin and the amount of HPV-VLP binding were high in cervical cancer cell lines, as the type HPV-16 is the main cause of cervical cancer. The degree of binding of HPV-VLP matched the alpha(6) integrin expression level in cell lines but was not correlated with beta(1) and beta(4) levels, which suggests that alpha(6) integrin is the main receptor of HPV type 16.

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