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Mol Immunol. 2013 Jun;54(2):132-9. doi: 10.1016/j.molimm.2012.11.008. Epub 2012 Dec 27.

BST-2/tetherin: structural biology, viral antagonism, and immunobiology of a potent host antiviral factor.

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Department of Pathology and Immunology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, United States.


BST-2 (also known as tetherin, CD317, or HM1.24) was first described as a potent interferon-inducible host antiviral factor nearly five years ago. Since that time, numerous reports have been published regarding the antiviral activity and immunological properties of this protein. BST-2 blocks viral replication by inhibiting enveloped virus budding from the surface of infected cells. To counteract this, most viruses have developed strategies to antagonize BST-2, each employing a unique mechanism. In this review, we summarize the antiviral function, structural biology and immunobiology of BST-2. Taken together, our current understanding of BST-2 suggests potential avenues as well as challenges to exploiting its action in the development of broad spectrum antiviral treatments.

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