Don-Hong Wang

University of California, Davis, Davis, CA, United States

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Publications (6)36.67 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Latent Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) episomes are coated with viral latency-associated nuclear antigen (LANA). In contrast, LANA rapidly disassociates from episomes during reactivation. Lytic KSHV expresses polyadenylated nuclear RNA (PAN RNA), a long non-coding RNA (lncRNA). We report that PAN RNA promotes LANA-episomal disassociation through an interaction with LANA which facilitates LANA sequestration away from KSHV episomes during reactivation. These findings suggest that KSHV may have evolved an "RNA aptamer" to regulate latent protein function.
    Journal of Virology 11/2013; · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) is a protein that regulates a wide variety of cellular processes by covalent attachment of SUMO moieties to a diverse array of target proteins. Sumoylation also plays an important role in the replication of many viruses. Previously, we showed that Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) encodes a SUMO-ligase, K-bZIP, which catalyzes sumoylation of host and viral proteins. We report here that this virus also encodes a gene that functions as a SUMO-targeting ubiquitin-ligase (STUbL) which preferentially targets sumoylated proteins for degradation. K-Rta, the major transcriptional factor which turns on the entire lytic cycle, was recently found to have ubiquitin ligase activity toward a selected set of substrates. We show in this study that K-Rta contains multiple SIMs (SUMO interacting motif) and binds SUMOs with higher affinity toward SUMO-multimers. Like RNF4, the prototypic cellular STUbL, K-Rta degrades SUMO-2/3 and SUMO-2/3 modified proteins, including promyelocytic leukemia (PML) and K-bZIP. PML-NBs (nuclear bodies) or ND-10 are storage warehouses for sumoylated proteins, which negatively regulate herpesvirus infection, as part of the intrinsic immune response. Herpesviruses have evolved different ways to degrade or disperse PML bodies, and KSHV utilizes K-Rta to inhibit PML-NBs formation. This process depends on K-Rta's ability to bind SUMO, as a K-Rta SIM mutant does not effectively degrade PML. Mutations in the K-Rta Ring finger-like domain or SIM significantly inhibited K-Rta transactivation activity in reporter assays and in the course of viral reactivation. Finally, KSHV with a mutation in the Ring finger-like domain or SIM of K-Rta replicates poorly in culture, indicating that reducing SUMO-conjugates in host cells is important for viral replication. To our knowledge, this is the first virus which encodes both a SUMO ligase and a SUMO-targeting ubiquitin ligase that together may generate unique gene regulatory programs.
    PLoS Pathogens 08/2013; 9(8):e1003506. · 8.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: KSHV latent genomes are tethered to host histones to form a mini-chromosome also known as an "episome." Histones, which are core components of chromatin, are heavily modified by various histone targeting enzymes. Post-translational modifications of histones significantly influence accessibility of transcriptional factors, and thus have profound effects on gene expression. Recent studies showed that epigenetic marks on the KSHV episome are well-organized, exemplified by the absence of histone H3 lysine 9 (H3K9) methylation, a heterochromatic histone mark, from immediate-early and latent gene promoters in naturally infected cells. The present study revealed a mechanistic insight into KSHV epigenome regulation via a complex consisting of LANA and the H3K9me1/2 histone demethylase, JMJD1A/KDM3A. This complex was isolated from HeLa cell nuclear extracts stably-expressing LANA, and was verified by co-immunoprecipitation analyses and with purified proteins. LANA recruitment sites on the KSHV genome inversely correlated with H3K9me2 histone marks in naturally infected cells and methylation of H3K9 significantly inhibited LANA binding to the histone H3 tail. Chromatin immunoprecipitation coupled with KSHV tiling arrays identified the recruitment sites of the complex, while depletion of LANA expression or over expression of a KDM3A-binding deficient mutant decreased KDM3A recruitment to the KSHV genome. Finally, ablation of KDM3A expression from KSHV latently infected cells significantly inhibited KSHV gene expression leading to decreased KSHV replication during reactivation. Taken together, our results suggest that LANA may play a role in regulation of epigenetic marks on the KSHV genome, which is in part through association with the histone demethylase, KDM3A.
    Journal of Virology 04/2013; · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) latency-associated nuclear antigen (LANA) is a multifunctional protein with roles in gene regulation and maintenance of viral latency. Post-translational modification of LANA is important for functional diversification. Here, we report that LANA is subject to arginine methylation by protein arginine methyltransferase 1 in vitro and in vivo. The major arginine methylation site in LANA was mapped to arginine 20. This site was mutated to either phenylalanine (bulky hydrophobic, constitutive methylated mimetic) or lysine (positively charged, non-arginine methylatable) residues. The significance of the methylation in LANA function was examined in both the isolated form and in the context of the viral genome through the generation of recombinant KSHV. In addition, authentic LANA binding sites on the KSHV episome in naturally infected cells were identified using a whole genome KSHV tiling array. Although mutation of the methylation site resulted in no significant difference in KSHV LANA subcellular localization, we found that the methylation mimetic mutation resulted in augmented histone binding in vitro and increased LANA occupancy at identified LANA target promoters in vivo. Moreover, a cell line carrying the methylation mimetic mutant KSHV showed reduced viral gene expression relative to controls both in latency and in the course of reactivation. These results suggest that residue 20 is important for modulation of a subset of LANA functions and properties of this residue, including the hydrophobic character induced by arginine methylation, may contribute to the observed effects.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 12/2011; 287(8):5806-18. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV) has been linked to the development of Kaposi's sarcoma, a major AIDS-associated malignancy, and to hematologic malignancies, including primary effusion lymphoma and multicentric Castleman's disease. Like other herpesviruses, KSHV is capable of both latent and lytic replication. Understanding the molecular details associated with this transition from latency to lytic replication is key to controlling virus spread and can affect the development of intervention strategies. Here, we report that Kruppel-associated box domain-associated protein-1 (KAP-1)/transcriptional intermediary factor 1beta, a cellular transcriptional repressor that controls chromosomal remodeling, participates in the process of switching viral latency to lytic replication. Knockdown of KAP-1 by small interfering RNA leads to KSHV reactivation mediated by K-Rta, a key transcriptional regulator. In cells harboring latent KSHV, KAP-1 was associated with the majority of viral lytic-gene promoters. K-Rta overexpression induced the viral lytic cycle with concomitant reduction of KAP-1 binding to viral promoters. Association of KAP-1 with heterochromatin was modulated by both sumoylation and phosphorylation. During lytic replication of KSHV, KAP-1 was phosphorylated at Ser(824). Several lines of evidence directly linked the viral protein kinase to this post-translational modification. Additional studies showed that this phosphorylation of KAP-1 produced a decrease in its sumoylation, consequently decreasing the ability of KAP-1 to condense chromatin on viral promoters. In summary, the cellular transcriptional repressor KAP-1 plays a role in regulating KSHV latency, and viral protein kinase modulates the chromatin remodeling function of this repressor.
    Cancer Research 08/2009; 69(14):5681-9. · 8.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The oncogenic herpesvirus, Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, also identified as human herpesvirus 8, contains genes producing proteins that control transcription and influence cell signaling. Open reading frame 36 (ORF36) of this virus encodes a serine/threonine protein kinase, which is designated the viral protein kinase (vPK). Our recent efforts to elucidate the role of vPK in the viral life cycle have focused on identifying viral protein substrates and determining the effects of vPK-mediated phosphorylation on specific steps in viral replication. The vPK gene was transcribed into 4.2-kb and 3.6-kb mRNAs during the early and late phases of viral reactivation. vPK is colocalized with viral DNA replication/transcription compartments as marked by a polymerase processivity factor, and K-bZIP, a protein known to bind the viral DNA replication origin (Ori-Lyt) and to regulate viral transcription. The vPK physically associated with and strongly phosphorylated K-bZIP at threonine 111, a site also recognized by the cyclin-dependent kinase Cdk2. Both K-bZIP and vPK were corecruited to viral promoters targeted by K-bZIP as well as to the Ori-Lyt region. Phosphorylation of K-bZIP by vPK had a negative impact on K-bZIP transcription repression activity. The extent of posttranslational modification of K-bZIP by sumoylation, a process that influences its repression function, was decreased by vPK phosphorylation at threonine 111. Our data thus identify a new role of vPK as a modulator of viral transcription.
    Journal of Virology 03/2007; 81(3):1072-82. · 5.08 Impact Factor