[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Expression of Epstein-Barr Virus BZLF1, a key protein initiating the switch from latent to lytic infection, is known to cause cell growth arrest by accumulating p53 and p21(WAF1/CIP1) in epithelial cells, but its molecular mechanism remains elusive. We found here that the BZLF1 protein stimulates p53 binding to its recognition sequence. The BZLF1 accelerated the rate of p53-DNA complex formation through the interaction with p53 protein and also enhanced p53-specific transcription in vitro. Furthermore, p53 protein was found to bind to its target promoter regions specifically in the early stages of lytic replication. Overexpression of p53 at the early stages of lytic replication enhanced viral genome replication, supporting the idea that p53 plays an important role in the initiation steps of EBV replication. Taking the independent role of BZLF1 on p53 degradation into consideration, we propose that the BZLF1 protein regulates p53 and its target gene products in two distinctive manners; transient induction of p53 at the early stages for the initiation of viral productive replication and p53 degradation at the later stages for S-phase like environment preferable for viral replication.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: p53-signaling is modulated by viruses to establish a host cellular environment advantageous for their propagation. The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lytic program induces phosphorylation of p53, which prevents interaction with MDM2. Here, we show that induction of EBV lytic program leads to degradation of p53 via an ubiquitin-proteasome pathway independent of MDM2. The BZLF1 protein directly functions as an adaptor component of the ECS (Elongin B/C-Cul2/5-SOCS-box protein) ubiquitin ligase complex targeting p53 for degradation. Intringuingly, C-terminal phosphorylation of p53 resulting from activated DNA damage response by viral lytic replication enhances its binding to BZLF1 protein. Purified BZLF1 protein-associated ECS could be shown to catalyze ubiquitination of phospho-mimetic p53 more efficiently than the wild-type in vitro. The compensation of p53 at middle and late stages of the lytic infection inhibits viral DNA replication and production during lytic infection, suggesting that the degradation of p53 is required for efficient viral propagation. Taken together, these findings demonstrate a role for the BZLF1 protein-associated ECS ligase complex in regulation of p53 phosphorylated by activated DNA damage signaling during viral lytic infection.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) BMRF1 protein is an essential replication protein acting at viral replication forks as a viral DNA polymerase processivity factor, whereas the BALF2 protein is a single-stranded DNA-binding protein that also acts at replication forks and is most abundantly expressed during viral productive replication. Here we document that the BMRF1 protein evidently enhances viral BZLF1 transcription factor-mediated transactivation of the BALF2 gene promoter. Mutagenesis and electrophoretic mobility shift assays demonstrated the BALF2 promoter to harbor two BZLF1 protein-binding sites (BZLF1-responsive elements). Direct binding of the BZLF1 protein to BZLF1-responsive elements and physical interaction between BZLF1 and BMRF1 proteins are prerequisite for the BMRF1 protein up-regulation of the BALF2 gene promoter. A monomeric mutant, C95E, which is defective in homodimerization, could still interact and enhance BZLF1-mediated transactivation. Furthermore although EBV protein kinase phosphorylates BMRF1 protein extensively, it turned out that phosphorylation of the protein by the kinase is inhibitory to the enhancement of the BZLF1-mediated transactivation of BALF2 promoter. Exogenous expression of BMRF1 protein augmented BALF2 expression in HEK293 cells harboring the EBV genome but lacking BMRF1 and BALF5 genes, demonstrating functions as a transcriptional regulator in the context of viral infection. Overall the BMRF1 protein is a multifunctional protein that cannot only act as a DNA polymerase processivity factor but also enhances BALF2 promoter transcription as a coactivator for the BZLF1 protein, regulating the expression level of viral single-stranded DNA-binding protein.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 07/2009; 284(32):21557-68. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) productive replication occurs in an S-phase-like cellular environment with high cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) activity. The EBV protein kinase (PK), encoded by the viral BGLF4 gene, is a Ser/Thr protein kinase, which phosphorylates both viral and cellular proteins, modifying the cellular environment for efficient viral productive replication. We here provide evidence that the EBV PK phosphorylates the CDK inhibitor p27(Kip1), resulting in ubiquitination and degradation in a proteasome-dependent manner during EBV productive replication. Experiments with BGLF4 knockdown by small interfering RNA and BGLF4 knock-out viruses clarified that EBV PK is involved in p27(Kip1) degradation upon lytic replication. Transfection of the BGLF4 expression vector revealed that EBV PK alone could phosphorylate the Thr-187 residue of p27(Kip1) and that the ubiquitination and degradation of p27(Kip1) occurred in an SCF(Skp2) ubiquitin ligase-dependent manner. In vitro, EBV PK proved capable of phosphorylating p27(Kip1) at Thr-187. Unlike cyclin E-CDK2 activity, the EBV PK activity was not inhibited by p27(Kip1). Overall, EBV PK enhances p27(Kip1) degradation effectively upon EBV productive replication, contributing to establishment of an S-phase-like cellular environment with high CDK activity.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2009; 284(28):18923-31. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) BGLF4 gene product is the only protein kinase encoded by the virus genome. In order to elucidate its physiological roles in viral productive replication, we here established a BGLF4-knockout mutant and a revertant virus. While the levels of viral DNA replication of the deficient mutant were equivalent to those of the wild-type and the revertant, virus production was significantly impaired. Expression of the BGLF4 protein in trans fully complemented the low yield of the mutant virus, while expression of a kinase-dead (K102I) form of the protein failed to restore the virus titer. These results demonstrate that BGLF4 plays a significant role in production of infectious viruses and that the kinase activity is crucial.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lytic program elicits ATM-dependent DNA damage response, resulting in phosphorylation of p53 at N-terminus, which prevents interaction with MDM2. Nevertheless, p53-downstream signaling is blocked. We found here that during the lytic infection p53 was actively degraded in a proteasome-dependent manner even with a reduced level of MDM2. BZLF1 protein enhanced the ubiquitination of p53 in SaOS-2 cells. The degradation of p53 was observed even in the presence of Nutlin-3, an inhibitor of p53-MDM2 interaction, and also in mouse embryo fibroblasts lacking mdm2 gene, indicating that the BZLF1 protein-induced degradation of p53 was independent of MDM2. Furthermore, Nutlin-3 increased the level of p53 in the latent phase of EBV infection but not in the lytic phase. Although p53 level is regulated by MDM2 in the latent phase, it might be mediated by the BZLF1 protein-associated E3 ubiquitin ligase in the lytic phase for efficient viral propagation.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Homologous recombination is an important biological process that facilitates genome rearrangement and repair of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). The induction of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lytic replication induces ataxia telangiectasia-mutated (ATM)-dependent DNA damage checkpoint signaling, leading to the clustering of phosphorylated ATM and Mre11/Rad50/Nbs1 (MRN) complexes to sites of viral genome synthesis in nuclei. Here we report that homologous recombinational repair (HRR) factors such as replication protein A (RPA), Rad51, and Rad52 as well as MRN complexes are recruited and loaded onto the newly synthesized viral genome in replication compartments. The 32-kDa subunit of RPA is extensively phosphorylated at sites in accordance with those with ATM. The hyperphosphorylation of RPA32 causes a change in RPA conformation, resulting in a switch from the catalysis of DNA replication to the participation in DNA repair. The levels of Rad51 and phosphorylated RPA were found to increase with the progression of viral productive replication, while that of Rad52 proved constant. Furthermore, biochemical fractionation revealed increases in levels of DNA-bound forms of these HRRs. Bromodeoxyuridine-labeled chromatin immunoprecipitation and PCR analyses confirmed the loading of RPA, Rad 51, Rad52, and Mre11 onto newly synthesized viral DNA, and terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling analysis demonstrated DSBs in the EBV replication compartments. HRR factors might be recruited to repair DSBs on the viral genome in viral replication compartments. RNA interference knockdown of RPA32 and Rad51 prevented viral DNA synthesis remarkably, suggesting that homologous recombination and/or repair of viral DNA genome might occur, coupled with DNA replication to facilitate viral genome synthesis.
Journal of Virology 05/2009; 83(13):6641-51. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Reactivation of the Epstein-Barr virus from latency is dependent on expression of the viral BZLF1 protein. The BZLF1 promoter (Zp) normally exhibits only low basal activity but is activated in response to chemical inducers such as 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate and calcium ionophore. We found here that Transducer of Regulated cAMP-response Element-binding Protein (CREB) (TORC) 2 enhances Zp activity 10-fold and more than 100-fold with co-expression of the BZLF1 protein. Mutational analysis of Zp revealed that the activation by TORC is dependent on ZII and ZIII cis elements, binding sites for CREB family transcriptional factors and the BZLF1 protein, respectively. Immunoprecipitation, chromatin immunoprecipitation, and reporter assay using Gal4-luc and Gal4BD-BZLF1 fusion protein indicate that TORC2 interacts with BZLF1, and that the complex is efficiently recruited onto Zp. These observations clearly indicate that TORC2 activates the promoter through interaction with the BZLF1 protein as well as CREB family transcriptional factors. Induction of the lytic replication resulted in the translocation of TORC2 from cytoplasm to viral replication compartments in nuclei, and furthermore, activation of Zp by TORC2 was augmented by calcium-regulated phosphatase, calcineurin. Silencing of endogenous TORC2 gene expression by RNA interference decreased the levels of the BZLF1 protein in response to 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate/ionophore. Based on these results, we conclude that Epstein-Barr virus exploits the calcineurin-TORC signaling pathway through interactions between TORC and the BZLF1 protein in reactivation from latency.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 02/2009; 284(12):8033-41. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DNA damage induces hyper-phosphorylation of the Sp1 transcriptional factor. We have demonstrated that ionizing radiation-associated DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) induce phosphorylation of at least Ser-56 and Ser-101 residues on Sp1 in an ATM-dependent manner. UV irradiation- or hydroxyurea (HU)-induced replicative stress results in phosphorylation of only the Ser-101 residue. Furthermore, silencing of the ATM- and Rad3-related protein (ATR) in ATM-deficient cells treated with HU abrogated the Ser-101 phosphorylation. Thus, phosphorylation of Ser-101 on Sp1 appears to be a general response to DNA damage dependent on both ATM and ATR. Although silencing of Sp1 expression by siRNA targeting resulted in an increase in sensitivity to ionizing radiation (IR), the Ser-101 phosphorylation did not affect transcriptional activity from the Sp1 responsive promoter. Confocal laser microscopy analysis revealed co-localization of phosphorylated Sp1 at Ser-101 with phosphorylated ATM at Ser-1981, the affected sites representing DSBs. These observations suggest that phosphorylated Sp1 might play a role in DNA repair at damage sites rather than functioning in transcriptional regulation.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During productive infection, human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) UL44 transcription initiates at three distinct start sites that are differentially regulated. Two of the start sites, the distal and the proximal, are active at early times, whereas the middle start site is active only at late times after infection. The UL44 early viral gene product is essential for viral DNA synthesis. The UL44 gene product from the late viral promoter affects primarily viral gene expression at late times after infection rather than viral DNA synthesis (H. Isomura, M. F. Stinski, A. Kudoh, S. Nakayama, S. Iwahori, Y. Sato, and T. Tsurumi, J. Virol. 81:6197, 2007). The UL44 early viral promoters have a canonical TATA sequence, "TATAA." In contrast, the UL44 late viral promoter has a noncanonical TATA sequence. Using recombinant viruses, we found that the noncanonical TATA sequence is required for the accumulation of late viral transcripts. The GC boxes that surround the middle TATA element did not affect the kinetics or the start site of UL44 late transcription. Replacement of the distal TATA element with a noncanonical TATA sequence did not affect the kinetics of transcription or the transcription start site, but it did induce an alternative transcript at late times after infection. The data indicate that a noncanonical TATA box is used at late times after HCMV infection.
Journal of Virology 03/2008; 82(4):1638-46. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The promoter of the major immediate-early (MIE) genes of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), also referred to as the CMV promoter, possesses a cis-acting element positioned downstream of the TATA box between positions -14 and -1 relative to the transcription start site (+1). We determined the role of the cis-acting element in viral replication by comparing recombinant viruses with the cis-acting element replaced with other sequences. Recombinant virus with the simian CMV counterpart replicated efficiently in human foreskin fibroblasts, as well as wild-type virus. In contrast, replacement with the murine CMV counterpart caused inefficient MIE gene transcription, RNA splicing, MIE and early viral gene expression, and viral DNA replication. To determine which nucleotides in the cis-acting element are required for efficient MIE gene transcription and splicing, we constructed mutations within the cis-acting element in the context of a recombinant virus. While mutations in the cis-acting element have only a minor effect on in vitro transcription, the effects on viral replication are major. The nucleotides at -10 and -9 in the cis-acting element relative to the transcription start site (+1) affect efficient MIE gene transcription and splicing at early times after infection. The cis-acting element also acts as a cis-repression sequence when the viral IE86 protein accumulates in the infected cell. We demonstrate that the cis-acting element has an essential role in viral replication.
Journal of Virology 02/2008; 82(2):849-58. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The ataxia telangiectasia-mutated (ATM) protein, a member of the related phosphatidylinositol 3-like kinase family encoded by a gene responsible for the human genetic disorder ataxia telangiectasia, regulates cellular responses to DNA damage and viral infection. It has been previously reported that herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) infection induces activation of protein kinase activity of ATM and hyperphosphorylation of transcription factor, Sp1. We show that ATM is intimately involved in Sp1 hyperphosphorylation during HSV-1 infection rather than individual HSV-1-encoded protein kinases. In ATM-deficient cells or cells silenced for ATM expression by short hairpin RNA targeting, hyperphosphorylation of Sp1 was prevented even as HSV-1 infection progressed. Mutational analysis of putative ATM phosphorylation sites on Sp1 and immunoblot analysis with phosphopeptide-specific Sp1 antibodies clarified that at least Ser-56 and Ser-101 residues on Sp1 became phosphorylated upon HSV-1 infection. Serine-to-alanine mutations at both sites on Sp1 considerably abolished hyperphosphorylation of Sp1 upon infection. Although ATM phosphorylated Ser-101 but not Ser-56 on Sp1 in vitro, phosphorylation of Sp1 at both sites was not detected at all upon infection in ATM-deficient cells, suggesting that cellular kinase(s) activated by ATM could be involved in phosphorylation at Ser-56. Upon viral infection, Sp1-dependent transcription in ATM expression-silenced cells was almost the same as that in ATM-intact cells, suggesting that ATM-dependent phosphorylation of Sp1 might hardly affect its transcriptional activity during the HSV-1 infection. ATM-dependent Sp1 phosphorylation appears to be a global response to various DNA damage stress including viral DNA replication.
Journal of Virology 10/2007; 81(18):9653-64. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcription of the DNA polymerase processivity factor gene (UL44) of human cytomegalovirus initiates at three distinct start sites, which are differentially regulated during productive infection. Two of these start sites, the distal and proximal sites, are active at early times, and the middle start site is active at only late times after infection (F. Leach and E. S. Mocarski, J. Virol. 63:1783-1791, 1989). Compared to the wild type, UL44 gene expression was lower for recombinant viruses with the distal or the middle TATA element mutated. The transcripts initiating from the distal or middle start site facilitated late viral gene expression. The level of viral DNA synthesis was affected by mutation of the distal TATA element. In contrast, mutation of the middle TATA element did not affect the level of viral DNA synthesis, but it did affect significantly the level of late viral gene expression. Recombinant viruses with the distal or middle TATA element mutated grew more slowly than the wild type at both low and high multiplicities of infection. Reduced expression of the UL44 gene from the late middle viral promoter correlated with decreased late viral protein expression and decreased viral growth.
Journal of Virology 07/2007; 81(12):6197-206. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Induction of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) lytic replication blocks chromosomal DNA replication notwithstanding an S-phase-like cellular environment with high cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) activity. We report here that the phosphorylated form of MCM4, a subunit of the MCM complex essential for chromosomal DNA replication, increases with progression of lytic replication, Thr-19 and Thr-110 being CDK2/CDK1 targets whose phosphorylation inactivates MCM4-MCM6-MCM7 (MCM4-6-7) complex-associated DNA helicase. Expression of EBV-encoded protein kinase (EBV-PK) in HeLa cells caused phosphorylation of these sites on MCM4, leading to cell growth arrest. In vitro, the sites of MCM4 of the MCM4-6-7 hexamer were confirmed to be phosphorylated with EBV-PK, with the same loss of helicase activity as with CDK2/cyclin A. Introducing mutations in the N-terminal six Ser and Thr residues of MCM4 reduced the inhibition by CDK2/cyclin A, while EBV-PK inhibited the helicase activities of both wild-type and mutant MCM4-6-7 hexamers, probably since EBV-PK can phosphorylate MCM6 and another site(s) of MCM4 in addition to the N-terminal residues. Therefore, phosphorylation of the MCM complex by redundant actions of CDK and EBV-PK during lytic replication might provide one mechanism to block chromosomal DNA replication in the infected cells through inactivation of DNA unwinding by the MCM4-6-7 complex.
Journal of Virology 11/2006; 80(20):10064-72. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)-based amplicon vectors have been used widely in genetic engineering with many advantages for gene delivery, being easily constructed. An attenuated and replication-competent HSV-1 HF10 clone demonstrating an oncolytic effect on cancer cells in vitro and in vivo has been applied recently for clinical virotherapy of breast cancers and the present studies were conducted to test its efficacy in combination with an HSV-1 amplicon. For this purpose, a new system was developed to produce high titers of the HSV-1 amplicon vector and the results showed that its package efficiency and the titer ratio to HF10 were improved by passage through two cell lines. A high ratio of amplicon/helper virus HF10 (A/H) (>1) was required to express the foreign gene efficiently. Furthermore, in order to express the foreign gene conditionally, an HSV-1 ICP8 promoter was introduced in place of the human cytomegalovirus MIE promoter, this driving expression of the transgene when replication of HF10 progressed. The methodology for simple preparation of mixtures of viruses containing the amplicon with the oncolytic virus is documented. This system should find application for studies of cancer therapy.
Journal of Virological Methods 11/2006; 137(2):177-83. · 1.90 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mismatch repair (MMR) system, highly conserved throughout evolution, corrects nucleotide mispairing that arise during cellular DNA replication. We report here that proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), the clamp loader complex (RF-C), and a series of MMR proteins like MSH-2, MSH-6, MLH1, and hPSM2 can be assembled to Epstein-Barr virus replication compartments, the sites of viral DNA synthesis. Levels of the DNA-bound form of PCNA increased with progression of viral productive replication. Bromodeoxyuridine-labeled chromatin immunodepletion analyses confirmed that PCNA is loaded onto newly synthesized viral DNA as well as BALF2 and BMRF1 viral proteins during lytic replication. Furthermore, the anti-PCNA, -MSH2, -MSH3, or -MSH6 antibodies could immunoprecipitate BMRF1 replication protein probably via the viral DNA genome. PCNA loading might trigger transfer of a series of host MMR proteins to the sites of viral DNA synthesis. The MMR factors might function for the repair of mismatches that arise during viral replication or act to inhibit recombination between moderately divergent (homologous) sequences.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 05/2006; 281(16):11422-30. · 4.65 Impact Factor