G R Sandford

Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, United States

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Publications (36)161.17 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The complete genome of the English isolate of rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV-E) was determined. RCMV-E has a 202,946-bp genome with noninverting repeats but without terminal repeats. Thus, it differs significantly in size and genomic arrangement from closely related rodent cytomegaloviruses (CMVs). To account for the differences between the rat CMV isolates of Maastricht and England, RCMV-E was classified as Murid herpesvirus 8 by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses.
    Journal of Virology 12/2012; 86(24):13838. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    Young Bong Choi, Gordon Sandford, John Nicholas
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    ABSTRACT: Viral replication efficiency is in large part governed by the ability of viruses to counteract pro-apoptotic signals induced by infection of host cells. For HHV-8, viral interferon regulatory factor-1 (vIRF-1) contributes to this process in part via inhibitory interactions with BH3-only protein (BOP) Bim, recently identified as an interaction partner of vIRF-1. Here we recognize that the Bim-binding domain (BBD) of vIRF-1 resembles a region (BH3-B) of Bid, another BOP, which interacts intramolecularly with the functional BH3 domain of Bid to inhibit it pro-apoptotic activity. Indeed, vIRF-1 was found to target Bid in addition to Bim and to interact, via its BBD region, with the BH3 domain of each. In functional assays, BBD could substitute for BH3-B in the context of Bid, to suppress Bid-induced apoptosis in a BH3-binding-dependent manner, and vIRF-1 was able to protect transfected cells from apoptosis induced by Bid. While vIRF-1 can mediate nuclear sequestration of Bim, this was not the case for Bid, and inhibition of Bid and Bim by vIRF-1 could occur independently of nuclear localization of the viral protein. Consistent with this finding, direct BBD-dependent inactivation by vIRF-1 of Bid-induced mitochondrial permeabilization was demonstrable in vitro and isolated BBD sequences were also active in this assay. In addition to Bim and Bid BH3 domains, BH3s of BOPs Bik, Bmf, Hrk, and Noxa also were found to bind BBD, while those of both pro- and anti-apoptotic multi-BH domain Bcl-2 proteins were not. Finally, the significance of Bid to virus replication was demonstrated via Bid-depletion in HHV-8 infected cells, which enhanced virus production. Together, our data demonstrate and characterize BH3 targeting and associated inhibition of BOP pro-apoptotic activity by vIRF-1 via Bid BH3-B mimicry, identifying a novel mechanism of viral evasion from host cell defenses.
    PLoS Pathogens 06/2012; 8(6):e1002748. · 8.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Viral interleukin-6 (vIL-6) specified by human herpesvirus 8 is, unlike its cellular counterpart, secreted very inefficiently and can signal via vIL-6(2):gp130(2) signaling complexes from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) compartment. Intracellular, autocrine activities of vIL-6 are important for proproliferative and prosurvival activities of the viral cytokine in latently infected primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) cells. However, the molecular determinants of vIL-6 ER localization and function are unclear. Using yeast two-hybrid analysis, we identified the database-documented but uncharacterized splice variant of vitamin K epoxide reductase complex subunit 1 (VKORC1), termed VKORC1 variant 2 (VKORC1v2), as a potential interaction partner of vIL-6. In transfected cells, epitope-tagged VKORC1v2 was found to localize to the ER, to adopt a single-transmembrane (TM) topology placing the C tail in the ER lumen, and to bind vIL-6 via these sequences. Deletion mutagenesis and coprecipitation assays mapped the vIL-6-binding domain (vBD) of VKORC1v2 to TM-proximal residues 31 to 39. However, while sufficient to confer vIL-6 binding to a heterologous protein, vBD was unable to induce vIL-6 secretion when fused to (secreted) hIL-6, suggesting a VKORC1v2-independent mechanism of vIL-6 ER retention. In functional assays, overexpression of ER-directed vBD led to suppression of PEL cell proliferation and viability, effects also mediated by VKORC1v2 depletion and, as reported previously, by vIL-6 suppression. The growth-inhibitory and proapoptotic effects of VKORC1v2 depletion could be rescued by transduced wild-type VKORC1v2 but not by a vIL-6-refractory vBD-altered variant, indicating the functional relevance of the vIL-6-VKORC1v2 interaction. Notably, gp130 signaling was unaffected by VKORC1v2 or vBD overexpression or by VKORC1v2 depletion, suggesting an alternative pathway of vIL-6 activity via VKORC1v2. Combined, our data identify a novel and functionally significant interaction partner of vIL-6 that could potentially be targeted for therapeutic benefit.
    Journal of Virology 11/2011; 86(3):1577-88. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recombinant Towne CMV expressing luciferase under the control of CMV-DNA polymerase (POL) or the late pp28 (UL99) promoters were evaluated for potential application in high-throughput screening of anti-viral compounds. POL-and pp28-luciferase displayed maximal expression 48 and 72 hours post infection, respectively. The pp28-luciferase virus achieved a wider dynamic range of luciferase expression (6-7 logs) and was selected for testing of inhibition by five anti-viral compounds. Luciferase expression highly correlated with plaque reduction and real-time PCR. The pp28-luciferase reporter system is rapid, reproducible, and highly sensitive. It may be applied to screening of novel anti-CMV compounds.
    Virology Journal 01/2011; 8(1):40. · 2.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The immediate-early 1 (IE1) and IE2 proteins encoded by the major immediate-early (MIE) transcription unit of cytomegaloviruses are thought to play key roles in the switch between latent- and lytic-cycle infection. Whilst IE2 is essential for triggering the lytic cycle, the exact roles of IE1 have not been resolved. An MIE-exon 4-deleted rat cytomegalovirus (DeltaIE1) failed to synthesize the IE1 protein and did not disperse promyelocytic leukaemia bodies early post-infection, but was still capable of normal replication in fibroblast cell culture. However, DeltaIE1 had a diminished ability to infect salivary glands persistently in vivo and to reactivate from spleen explant cultures ex vivo. Quantification of viral genomes in spleens of infected animals revealed a reduced amount of DeltaIE1 virus produced during acute infection, suggesting a role for IE1 as a regulator in establishing a chronic or persistent infection, rather than in influencing the latency or reactivation processes more directly.
    Journal of General Virology 11/2009; 91(Pt 3):616-21. · 3.13 Impact Factor
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    Gordon Sandford, Young Bong Choi, John Nicholas
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    ABSTRACT: The human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) viral G protein-coupled receptor (vGPCR) has been implicated in virus-associated disease pathogenesis due principally to its ability to induce the production of angiogenic cytokines involved in this process. However, the role of the vGPCR in normal virus biology is understudied and remains unknown. Here we provide evidence from vGPCR gene knockout and depletion experiments that vGPCR is a positive regulator of HHV-8 productive replication and, through experimental utilization of Galpha-coupling variants of vGPCR, that signaling via Galpha(q) activation and targeted mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways is of particular relevance to this activity.
    Journal of Virology 09/2009; 83(24):13009-14. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) interleukin-6 (vIL-6) is distinct from human and other cellular IL-6 proteins in that it does not require the nonsignaling alpha-receptor subunit for the formation of gp130-based signal transducing complexes and also is largely retained intracellularly rather than being secreted. We and others have reported that vIL-6 is retained and is active in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) compartment, and data from our laboratory have demonstrated that intracellular vIL-6 is functional in the autocrine promotion of proliferation and survival of HHV-8 latently infected primary effusion lymphoma cells. It has also been reported that vIL-6 secretion in gp130-deficient cells can be enhanced by introduced gp130, thereby implicating the signal transducer in vIL-6 trafficking to the cell surface. We examine here the requirements for intracellular retention and localization of vIL-6. Using vIL-6-hIL-6 chimeric and point-mutated vIL-6 proteins, we identified regions and residues of vIL-6 influencing vIL-6 secretion. However, there was no correlation between vIL-6 secretion and gp130 interaction. We found that vIL-6, but not hIL-6, could associate stably with ER-resident chaperone protein calnexin. Glycosylation-dependent interaction of vIL-6 with calnexin correlated with proper protein folding, but there was no direct relationship between vIL-6-calnexin interaction and intracellular retention. While calnexin depletion had little influence on absolute amounts of secreted vIL-6, it led to markedly reduced levels of intracellular cytokine. This was reversed by gp130 transduction, which had no detectable effect on vIL-6 secretion, but redistributed vIL-6 into ER-distinct locations in calnexin-depleted cells, specifically. Our data reveal that calnexin plays a role in ER localization of vIL-6 and that gp130 promotes ER exit, but not secretion, of the viral cytokine.
    Journal of Virology 05/2009; 83(13):6874-82. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    Daming Chen, Gordon Sandford, John Nicholas
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    ABSTRACT: Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8)-encoded viral interleukin-6 (vIL-6) has been implicated as a key factor in virus-associated neoplasia because of its proproliferative and survival effects and also in view of its angiogenic properties. A major difference between vIL-6 and human IL-6 (hIL-6) is that vIL-6, uniquely, is largely retained and can signal intracellularly. While vIL-6 is generally considered to be a lytic gene, several reports have noted its low-level expression in latently infected primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) cultures, in the absence of other lytic gene expression. Thus, intracellular autocrine signal transduction by the viral cytokine may be of particular relevance to the growth and survival of latently infected cells and to pathogenesis. Here we report that most intracellular vIL-6 is located in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), signals via the gp130 signal transducer in this compartment, and does so independently of the gp80 alpha-subunit of the IL-6 receptor, required for hIL-6 signal transduction. Signaling and biological assays incorporating ER-retained vIL-6 and hIL-6 confirmed vIL-6 activity, specifically, in this compartment. Knockdown of vIL-6 expression in PEL cells led to markedly reduced cell growth in normal culture, independently of extracellular cytokines. This could be reversed by reintroduction via virus vector of exclusively ER-retained vIL-6. These data indicate that in virus biology vIL-6 may act to support the growth and survival of cells latently infected with HHV-8 in an autocrine manner via intracrine signaling and that these activities may contribute to the maintenance of latently infected cells and to virus-induced neoplasia.
    Journal of Virology 12/2008; 83(2):722-33. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Sequence data for eight genes, together with time-course Northern blotting and 3'- and 5'-RACE (rapid amplification of cDNA ends) analysis for some mRNAs from a 12 kb region upstream from the major immediate-early (MIE) genes of the English isolate of rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV), are presented. The results identified important differences compared to both murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) and the Maastricht isolate of RCMV. A striking finding is the presence of a highly conserved, rightwards-oriented homologue of the rat cellular CD200 (OX2) gene immediately to the right of the MIE region, which replaces either the leftwards-oriented AAV REP gene of RCMV (Maastricht) or the upstream spliced portions of the immediate-early 2 gene (ie2) in MCMV. From the presence of other homologues of MCMV- and RCMV-specific genes, such as the beta-chemokine MCK-2, SGG1 and an Fcgamma receptor gene, as reported here, the basic architecture of the MIE region (reported previously) and the level of IE2 and DNA polymerase (POL) protein conservation in phylogenetic analyses, it is clear that the English strain of RCMV is also a member of the genus Muromegalovirus, but is a beta-herpesvirus species that is very distinct from both MCMV and RCMV (Maastricht). Both the lack of a CD200 homologue in the other two rodent viruses and the depth of sequence divergence of the rodent CMV IE2 and POL proteins suggest that these three viruses have evolved as separate species in the genus Muromegalovirus since very early in the host rodent lineage.
    Journal of General Virology 03/2005; 86(Pt 2):263-74. · 3.13 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: During apoptotic cell death, biochemical processes modify self-proteins and create potential autoantigens. To maintain self-tolerance in the face of natural cell turnover, the immune system must prevent or control responses to apoptosis-associated autoantigens or risk autoimmunity. The molecular mechanisms governing this process remain largely unknown. Here, we show that expression of the immunoregulatory protein CD200 increases as murine dendritic cells (DCs) undergo apoptosis. We define CD200 as a p53-target gene and identify both p53- and caspase-dependent pathways that control CD200 expression during apoptosis. CD200 expression on apoptotic DCs diminishes proinflammatory cytokine production in response to self-antigens in vitro and is required for UVB-mediated tolerance to haptenated self-proteins in vivo. Up-regulation of CD200 may represent a novel mechanism, whereby immune reactivity to apoptosis-associated self-antigens is suppressed under steady state conditions.
    Blood 05/2004; 103(7):2691-8. · 9.06 Impact Factor
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    Chaoqi Liu, Gordon Sandford, Guo Fei, John Nicholas
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    ABSTRACT: The viral G-protein coupled receptor (vGPCR) specified by human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8) open reading frame 74 (ORF74) is a ligand-independent chemokine receptor that has structural and functional homologues among other characterized gammaherpesviruses and related receptors in the betaherpesviruses. Sequence comparisons of the gammaherpesvirus vGPCRs revealed a highly conserved region in the C tail, just distal to the seventh transmembrane domain. Mutagenesis of the corresponding codons of HHV-8 ORF74 was carried out to provide C-tail-altered proteins for functional analyses. By measuring receptor-activated vascular endothelial growth factor promoter induction and NF-kappaB, mitogen-activated protein kinase, and Ca(2+) signaling, we found that while some altered receptors showed general signaling deficiencies, others had distinguishable activation profiles, suggestive of selective Galpha protein coupling. This was supported by the finding that vGPCR and representative functionally altered variants, vGPCR.8 (R322W) and vGPCR.15 (M325S), were affected differently by inhibitors of Galpha(i) (pertussis toxin), protein kinase C (GF109203X), and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (wortmannin). Consistent with the signaling data, [(35)S]GTPgammaS incorporation assays revealed preferential coupling of vGPCR.15 to Galpha(q) and an inability of vGPCR.8 to couple functionally to Galpha(q). However, both variants, wild-type vGPCR, and a C-tail deletion version of the receptor were equally able to associate physically with Galpha(q). Combined, our data demonstrate that HHV-8 vGPCR contains discrete sites of Galpha interaction and that receptor residues in the proximal region of the cytoplasmic tail are determinants of Galpha protein coupling specificity.
    Journal of Virology 04/2004; 78(5):2460-71. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV, or HHV-8) encodes a pathogenic viral homologue of human interleukin-6 (IL-6). In contrast to human IL-6 (hIL-6), viral IL-6 (vIL-6) binds directly to, and activates, the shared human cytokine signaling receptor gp130 without the requirement for pre-complexation to a specific alpha-receptor. Here, we dissect the biochemical and functional basis of vIL-6 mimicry of hIL-6. We find that, in addition to the "alpha-receptor-independent" tetrameric vIL-6/gp130 complex, the viral cytokine can engage the human alpha-receptor (IL-6Ralpha) to form a hexameric vIL-6/IL-6Ralpha/gp130 complex with enhanced signaling potency. In contrast to the assembly sequence of the hIL-6 hexamer, the preformed vIL-6/gp130 tetramer can be decorated with IL-6Ralpha, post facto, in a "vIL-6-dependent" fashion. A detailed comparison of the viral and human cytokine/gp130 interfaces indicates that vIL-6 has evolved a unique molecular strategy to interact with gp130, as revealed by an almost entirely divergent structural makeup of its receptor binding sites. Viral IL-6 appears to utilize an elegant combination of both convergent, and unexpectedly divergent, molecular strategies to oligomerize gp130 and activate similar downstream signaling cascades as its human counterpart.
    Journal of Molecular Biology 02/2004; 335(2):641-54. · 3.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: It has been hypothesized that the major immediate-early (MIE) enhancer of cytomegalovirus (CMV) is important in determining virus tropism and latency because of its essential role in initiating the cascade of early gene expression necessary for virus replication. Although rat CMV (RCMV) and murine CMV (MCMV) exhibit extreme species specificity in vivo, they differ in their ability to replicate in tissue culture. MCMV can replicate in a rat embryo fibroblast (REF) cell line while RCMV does not grow in murine fibroblasts. The tropism is not due to a block in virus entry into the cell. We have constructed a recombinant RCMV in which the RCMV MIE enhancer has been replaced with that of MCMV. Growth of the recombinant virus in tissue culture remains restricted to rat cells, suggesting that other viral and/or host factors are more important in determining in vitro tropism. Unlike findings using recombinant MCMV in which the human CMV (HCMV) MIE enhancer substitutes for the native one (A. Angulo, M. Messerle, U. H. Koszinowski, and P. Ghazal, J. Virol. 72:8502-8509, 1998), infection with our recombinant virus at a low multiplicity of infection resulted in a substantial decrease in virus replication. This occurred despite comparable or increased MIE transcription from the recombinant virus. In vivo experiments showed that the recombinant virus replicates normally in the spleen during acute infection. Notably, the recombinant virus appears to be deficient in spreading to the salivary gland, suggesting a role for the MIE enhancer in tropism for certain tissues involved in virus dissemination. Four months after infection, recombinant virus with the foreign MIE enhancer was reactivated from spleen explants.
    Journal of Virology 07/2001; 75(11):5076-83. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Donor T cells play a pivotal role in facilitating alloengraftment but also cause graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Ex vivo T-cell depletion (TCD) of donor marrow is the most effective strategy for reducing GVHD but can compromise engraftment. This study examined an approach whereby donor T cells are selectively eliminated in vivo after transplantation using transgenic mice in which a thymidine kinase (TK) suicide gene is targeted to the T cell using a CD3 promoter/enhancer construct. Lethally irradiated B10.BR mice transplanted with major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-incompatible TCD C57BL/6 (B6) bone marrow (BM) plus TK(+) T cells were protected from GVHD after treatment with ganciclovir (GCV) in a schedule-dependent fashion. To examine the effect of GCV treatment on alloengraftment, sublethally irradiated AKR mice underwent transplantation with TCD B6 BM plus limiting numbers (5 x 10(5)) of B6 TK(+) T cells. Animals treated with GCV had comparable donor engraftment but significantly reduced GVHD when compared with untreated mice. These mice also had a significantly increased number of donor splenic T cells when assessed 4 weeks after bone marrow transplantation. Thus, the administration of GCV did not render recipients T-cell deficient, but rather enhanced lymphocyte recovery. Adoptive transfer of spleen cells from GCV-treated chimeric mice into secondary AKR recipients failed to cause GVHD indicating that donor T cells were tolerant of recipient alloantigens. These studies demonstrate that administration of TK gene-modified donor T cells can be used as an approach to mitigate GVHD without compromising alloengraftment.
    Blood 05/2001; 97(8):2506-13. · 9.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is a serious complication of allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT). CMV disease can usually be prevented by passive immunization with donor-derived CMV-pp65-specific T-cell clones if provided early post-BMT. The classic method of generating CMV-specific T-cell clones requires donor-derived fibroblast lines infected with CMV as stimulators, thus limiting the availability of CMV immunotherapy to those patients for whom a donor skin biopsy can be obtained 6 to 8 weeks pretransplantation. To overcome this limitation we have used monocyte-derived dendritic cells (DCs) to induce donor anti-CMV cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs). Matured, adeno-pp65-infected DCs were added at day 0 and at day 7 of a 2-week culture of donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells. DC-primed cultures were compared with cultures stimulated in an identical fashion with CMV-infected fibroblasts or with adeno-pp65-infected freshly isolated blood monocytes. Specific killing of CMV-infected fibroblasts was detected in all except the culture stimulated with pp65-infected monocytes. DCs infected after maturation elicited greater CTL activity than did DCs matured after infection. A series of 5 CD8+ clones from a fibroblast-stimulated culture and 7 CD8+ clones from a mature-DC-stimulated culture derived from a single HLA-A*0201+ individual were characterized. All 12 clones lysed autologous CMV-infected fibroblasts. All except 1 clone from the CMV-infected fibroblast arm (fibroblast arm) lysed vaccinia-pp65-infected B-lymphoblastoid cell lines (BLCLs); none lysed vaccinia-pp150-infected or noninfected BLCLs. Ten of 10 CD8+ clones tested were restricted by HLA-A*0201. Seven of the 12 clones were Vbeta6+ (2 from the fibroblast arm and 5 from the DC arm) with an identical Vbeta6.1-J1.4 sequence. Three clones from the fibroblast arm and 5 clones from the DC arm recognized the pp65 peptide NLVPMVATV (amino acids [aa], 495-503). These data show that CMV-specific T-cell clones with similar restriction patterns, T cell-receptor usage, and specificity can be generated using monocyte-derived pp65-infected-DC or CMV-infected-fibroblast stimulators. This approach should broaden the applicability of CMV-specific T-cell immunotherapy to a wider spectrum of patients by reducing the time required to generate CMV-specific T-cell clones.
    Biology of Blood and Marrow Transplantation 02/2001; 7(5):247-56. · 3.94 Impact Factor
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    S Voigt, G R Sandford, L Ding, W H Burns
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    ABSTRACT: The English isolate of rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV) encodes a 20-kDa protein with a C-type lectin-like domain that is expressed in the delayed-early and late phases of the viral replication cycle. Genomic sequence analysis of the restriction fragment KpnR of RCMV revealed significant homology to several C-type lectin-containing molecules implicated in natural killer (NK) and T-cell interactions, as well as genes from four poxviruses and African swine fever virus. The gene is spliced into five exons and shows a splicing pattern with exon boundaries similar to those observed in the human differentiation antigen CD69. The cap site of the gene was mapped by RNase protection, 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends, and primer extension experiments. This analysis demonstrated that the core promoter of the RCMV lectin-like gene contains a GATA rather than a TATA box. Splicing patterns were confirmed with isolates from an infected-cell cDNA library. A unique aspect of the protein is that its translation is not initiated by the canonical methionine but rather by alanine. To study its role in virus replication and pathogenesis, a recombinant virus was constructed in which the gene is interrupted. Replication in tissue culture was similar to that of wild-type virus.
    Journal of Virology 02/2001; 75(2):603-11. · 5.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human herpesvirus-8 (HHV-8) has been detected in Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) lesions of all types (AIDS-related, classical and endemic), in body-cavity-based B-cell lymphomas (BCBLs) and in lesions of multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD). We have identified a major gamma-herpesvirus-divergent locus (DL-B) in HHV-8 DNA encoding several HHV-8 unique open reading frames (ORFs), including a homologue of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and two homologues of macrophage inflammatory protein MIP-1. We show that the HHV-8-encoded IL-6 homologue (vIL-6) shares functional properties with endogenous IL-6 proteins and that both vIL-6 and vMIP-1 transcripts are present at high levels following butyrate induction of an HHV-8' BCBL cell line. Low amounts of constitutive vIL-6, but not vMIP-1, mRNA were also detected. The presence of a functional IL-6 homologue encoded by HHV-8 may provide a mechanistic model for the hypothesized role of HHV-8 in KS, MCD and BCBL that involves the mitogenic effects of vIL-6 on surrounding cells. MIP-1 proteins may enhance these effects through the chemotactic recruitment of endogenous cytokine-producing cells into affected tissues and could potentially influence HIV disease progression in coinfected individuals through interactions with the HIV co-receptor CCR-5.
    Nature Medicine 04/1997; 3(3):287-92. · 22.86 Impact Factor
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    G R Sandford, W H Burns
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    ABSTRACT: The immediate early (IE) enhancer/promoter regions of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), simian cytomegalovirus (SCMV), and murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) share the following characteristics: (1) they demonstrate high-level transcriptional properties, (2) multiple repetitive elements are found throughout the enhancer region, and (3) consensus binding sites for cellular transcription factors are frequently located within the repetitive elements. Here we characterize the enhancer/promoter region of the major IE gene locus for rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV). The RCMV IE enhancer/promoter region is able to activate transcription at the same level as HCMV or MCMV IE enhancer/promoter regions. In contrast to HCMV, MCMV, and SCMV, the RCMV IE enhancer/promoter region is almost completely lacking in repetitive elements and the only recognized consensus binding sites for cellular transcription factors recognized by sequence are three CTF, two AP1, and one NF-kappa B binding sites. However, enhancing activity does not appear to be dependent on these individual sites in transient transfection experiments, but is additive across the enhancer region.
    Virology 09/1996; 222(2):310-7. · 3.37 Impact Factor
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    G R Sandford, K Ho, W H Burns
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    ABSTRACT: A major locus of rat cytomegalovirus (RCMV) immediate-early (IE) RNA transcription was identified. A cDNA library from rat embryo fibroblasts infected with RCMV under IE conditions was constructed and screened by using appropriate RCMV DNA probes, revealing at least two IE genes (IE1 and IE2) transcribed from this locus by differential splicing. The first three exons (the first is noncoding) are spliced to exon 4 to form IE1 and to exon 5 to form IE2. The structural organization of the RCMV major IE region is therefore similar to that of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) and murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV). When we compared the predicted amino acid sequences of the IE1 proteins of RCMV, HCMV, and MCMV, no areas of homology were found across all three proteins, while a few small areas of homology were found between RCMV IE1 and MCMV IE1. In contrast, large areas of homology were found across the carboxyl half of RCMV IE2, HCMV IE2, and MCMV ie3 proteins. In addition, similarities were found at the beginning of exon 5 of RCMV and MCMV. The possible significance of these conserved regions is discussed. Dinucleotide frequency analysis demonstrated a decrease in CpG frequency over the IE region. The IE gene products were able to transactivate heterologous promoters.
    Journal of Virology 08/1993; 67(7):4093-103. · 5.08 Impact Factor
  • W H Burns, G R Sandford
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    ABSTRACT: Human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) is a recently recognized human herpesvirus isolated from lymphoid cells and thought to be the causative agent for exanthem subitum. Using dot blot hybridization, the HHV-6 sensitivity pattern to several antivirals was compared with those of herpes simplex virus type 1 and human cytomegalovirus. HHV-6 most closely resembled cytomegalovirus in that it was relatively resistant to the antiviral effects of acyclovir and bromovinyl-deoxyuridine but sensitive to ganciclovir and phosphonoacetic acid. From these results, it appears more likely that HHV-6 infections would respond to ganciclovir and foscarnet than to acyclovir should treatment be deemed advisable, although the low toxicity of acyclovir may allow for its use at doses that might affect replication of HHV-6.
    The Journal of Infectious Diseases 10/1990; 162(3):634-7. · 5.85 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

731 Citations
161.17 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2004–2012
    • Johns Hopkins University
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 2001
    • Medical College of Wisconsin
      • Department of Medicine
      Milwaukee, WI, United States
  • 1985–1993
    • Johns Hopkins Medicine
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • 1982
    • University of Maryland, Baltimore
      Baltimore, Maryland, United States