Subcellular localization and calcium and pH requirements for proteolytic processing of the Hendra virus fusion protein.
Proteolytic cleavage of the Hendra virus fusion (F) protein results in the formation of disulfide-linked F1 and F2 subunits, with cleavage occurring after residue K109 in the sequence GDVK/L. This unusual cleavage site and efficient propagation of Hendra virus in a furin-deficient cell line indicate that the Hendra F protein is not cleaved by furin, the protease responsible for proteolytic activation of many viral fusion proteins. To identify the subcellular site of Hendra F processing, Vero cells transfected with pCAGGS-Hendra F or pCAGGS-SV5 F were metabolically labeled and chased in the absence and presence of inhibitors of exocytosis. The addition of carbonyl-cyanide-3-chlorophenylhydrazone, monensin, brefeldin A, or NaF-AlCl3 or incubation of cells at 20 degrees C all inhibited processing of the Hendra F protein, suggesting that cleavage of Hendra F occurs either in secretory vesicles budding from the trans-Golgi network or at the cell surface. In contrast to proteolytic cleavage of the simian virus 5 (SV5) F protein by the Ca(2+)-dependent protease furin, proteolytic cleavage of the Hendra F protein was not significantly inhibited by decreases in Ca2+ levels following incubation with EGTA or A23187. However, in the presence of weak amines and H+ V-ATPase inhibitors, known to raise intracellular pH, cleavage of Hendra F protein was inhibited while processing of the SV5 F protein was not significantly affected. The subcellular location, sensitivity to pH changes, and decreased Ca2+ requirement suggest that the protease responsible for cleavage of Hendra F protein differs from proteases previously shown to be involved in the processing of other viral glycoproteins. (+info)
Receptor binding, fusion inhibition, and induction of cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies by a soluble G glycoprotein of Hendra virus.
Hendra virus (HeV) and Nipah virus (NiV) are closely related emerging viruses comprising the Henipavirus genus of the Paramyxovirinae, which are distinguished by their ability to cause fatal disease in both animal and human hosts. These viruses infect cells by a pH-independent membrane fusion event mediated by their attachment (G) and fusion (F) glycoproteins. Previously, we reported on HeV- and NiV-mediated fusion activities and detailed their host-cell tropism characteristics. These studies also suggested that a common cell surface receptor, which could be destroyed by protease, was utilized by both viruses. To further characterize the G glycoprotein and its unknown receptor, soluble forms of HeV G (sG) were constructed by replacing its cytoplasmic tail and transmembrane domains with an immunoglobulin kappa leader sequence coupled to either an S-peptide tag (sG(S-tag)) or myc-epitope tag (sG(myc-tag)) to facilitate purification and detection. Expression of sG was verified in cell lysates and culture supernatants by specific affinity precipitation. Analysis of sG by size exclusion chromatography and sucrose gradient centrifugation demonstrated tetrameric, dimeric, and monomeric species, with the majority of the sG released as a disulfide-linked dimer. Immunofluorescence staining revealed that sG specifically bound to HeV and NiV infection-permissive cells but not to a nonpermissive HeLa cell line clone, suggesting that it binds to virus receptor on host cells. Preincubation of host cells with sG resulted in dose-dependent inhibition of both HeV and NiV cell fusion as well as infection by live virus. Taken together, these data indicate that sG retains important native structural features, and we further demonstrate that administration of sG to rabbits can elicit a potent cross-reactive neutralizing antibody response against infectious HeV and NiV. This HeV sG glycoprotein will be exceedingly useful for structural studies, receptor identification strategies, and vaccine development goals for these important emerging viral agents. (+info)
Role of N-linked glycosylation of the Hendra virus fusion protein.
The Hendra virus fusion (F) protein contains five potential sites for N-linked glycosylation in the ectodomain. Examination of F protein mutants with single asparagine-to-alanine mutations indicated that two sites in the F(2) subunit (N67 and N99) and two sites in the F(1) subunit (N414 and N464) normally undergo N-linked glycosylation. While N-linked modification at N414 is critical for protein folding and transport, F proteins lacking carbohydrates at N67, N99, or N464 remained fusogenically active. As N464 lies within heptad repeat B, these results contrast with those seen for several paramyxovirus F proteins. (+info)
Ephrin-B2 ligand is a functional receptor for Hendra virus and Nipah virus.
Hendra virus (HeV) and Nipah virus (NiV) belong to the genus Henipavirus of the family Paramyxoviridae and are unique in that they exhibit a broad species tropism and cause fatal disease in both animals and humans. They infect cells through a pH-independent membrane fusion process mediated by their fusion and attachment glycoproteins. Previously, we demonstrated identical cell fusion tropisms for HeV and NiV and the protease-sensitive nature of their unknown cell receptor and identified a human cell line (HeLa-USU) that was nonpermissive for fusion and virus infection. Here, a microarray analysis was performed on the HeLa-USU cells, permissive HeLa-CCL2 cells, and two other permissive human cell lines. From this analysis, we identified a list of genes encoding known and predicted plasma membrane surface-expressed proteins that were highly expressed in all permissive cells and absent from the HeLa-USU cells and rank-ordered them based on their relative levels. Available expression vectors containing the first 10 genes were obtained and individually transfected into HeLa-USU cells. One clone, encoding human ephrin-B2 (EFNB2), was found capable of rendering HeLa-USU cells permissive for HeV- and NiV-mediated cell fusion as well as infection by live virus. A soluble recombinant EFNB2 could potently block fusion and infection and bind soluble recombinant HeV and NiV attachment glycoproteins with high affinity. Together, these data indicate that EFNB2 serves as a functional receptor for both HeV and NiV. The highly conserved nature of EFNB2 in humans and animals is consistent with the broad tropism exhibited by these emerging zoonotic viruses. (+info)
Sequence motif upstream of the Hendra virus fusion protein cleavage site is not sufficient to promote efficient proteolytic processing.
The Hendra virus fusion (HeV F) protein is synthesized as a precursor, F(0), and proteolytically cleaved into the mature F(1) and F(2) heterodimer, following an HDLVDGVK(109) motif. This cleavage event is required for fusogenic activity. To determine the amino acid requirements for processing of the HeV F protein, we constructed multiple mutants. Individual and simultaneous alanine substitutions of the eight residues immediately upstream of the cleavage site did not eliminate processing. A chimeric SV5 F protein in which the furin site was substituted for the VDGVK(109) motif of the HeV F protein was not processed but was expressed on the cell surface. Another chimeric SV5 F protein containing the HDLVDGVK(109) motif of the HeV F protein underwent partial cleavage. These data indicate that the upstream region can play a role in protease recognition, but is neither absolutely required nor sufficient for efficient processing of the HeV F protein. (+info)
Location of, immunogenicity of and relationships between neutralization epitopes on the attachment protein (G) of Hendra virus.
Epitopes involved in a protective immune response to Hendra virus (HeV) (Henipavirus, Paramxyoviridae) were investigated by generating five neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to the virus attachment protein (G) of HeV (HeV G) and sequencing of the G gene of groups of neutralization-escape variants selected with each mAb. Amino acid substitutions occurred at eight distinct sites on HeV G. Relationships between these sites were investigated in binding and neutralization assays using heterologous combinations of variants and mAbs. The sites were also mapped to a proposed structural model for the attachment proteins of Paramyxoviridae. Their specific locations and the nature of their interactions with the mAb panel provided the first functional evidence that HeV G in fact resembled the proposed structure. Four sites (aa 183-185, 417, 447 and 570) contributed to a major discontinuous epitope, on the base of the globular head, that was similar to immunodominant virus neutralization sites found in other paramyxoviruses. Amino acid similarity between HeV and Nipah virus was relatively highly conserved at these sites but decreased significantly at the other sites identified in this study. These included another discontinuous epitope on the base of the head region defined by sites aa 289 and 324 and well separated epitopes on the top of the head at sites aa 191-195 and 385-356. The latter epitope corresponded to immunodominant neutralization sites found in Rinderpest virus and Measles virus. (+info)
Endocytosis plays a critical role in proteolytic processing of the Hendra virus fusion protein.
The Hendra virus fusion (F) protein is synthesized as a precursor protein, F(0), which is proteolytically processed to the mature form, F(1) + F(2). Unlike the case for the majority of paramyxovirus F proteins, the processing event is furin independent, does not require the addition of exogenous proteases, is not affected by reductions in intracellular Ca(2+), and is strongly affected by conditions that raise the intracellular pH (C. T. Pager, M. A. Wurth, and R. E. Dutch, J. Virol. 78:9154-9163, 2004). The Hendra virus F protein cytoplasmic tail contains a consensus motif for endocytosis, YXXPhi. To analyze the potential role of endocytosis in the processing and membrane fusion promotion of the Hendra virus F protein, mutation of tyrosine 525 to alanine (Hendra virus F Y525A) or phenylalanine (Hendra virus F Y525F) was performed. The rate of endocytosis of Hendra virus F Y525A was significantly reduced compared to that of the wild-type (wt) F protein, confirming the functional importance of the endocytosis motif. An intermediate level of endocytosis was observed for Hendra virus F Y525F. Surprisingly, dramatic reductions in the rate of proteolytic processing were observed for Hendra virus F Y525A, although initial transport to the cell surface was not affected. The levels of surface expression for both Hendra virus F Y525A and Hendra virus F Y525F were higher than that of the wt protein, and these mutants displayed enhanced syncytium formation. These results suggest that endocytosis is critically important for Hendra virus F protein cleavage, representing a new paradigm for proteolytic processing of paramyxovirus F proteins. (+info)
Cathepsin L is involved in proteolytic processing of the Hendra virus fusion protein.
Proteolytic processing of paramyxovirus fusion (F) proteins is essential for the generation of a mature and fusogenic form of the F protein. Although many paramyxovirus F proteins are proteolytically processed by the cellular protease furin at a multibasic cleavage motif, cleavage of the newly emerged Hendra virus F protein occurs by a previously unidentified cellular protease following a single lysine at residue 109. We demonstrate here that the cellular protease cathepsin L is involved in converting the Hendra virus precursor F protein (F(0)) to the active F(1) + F(2) disulfide-linked heterodimer. To initially identify the class of protease involved in Hendra virus F protein cleavage, Vero cells transfected with pCAGGS-Hendra F or pCAGGS-SV5 F (known to be proteolytically processed by furin) were metabolically labeled and chased in the absence or presence of serine, cysteine, aspartyl, and metalloprotease inhibitors. Nonspecific and specific protease inhibitors known to decrease cathepsin activity inhibited proteolytic processing of Hendra virus F but had no effect on simian virus 5 F processing. We next designed shRNA oligonucleotides to cathepsin L which dramatically reduced cathepsin L protein expression and enzyme activity. Cathepsin L shRNA-expressing Vero cells transfected with pCAGGS-Hendra F demonstrated a nondetectable amount of cleavage of the Hendra virus F protein and significantly decreased membrane fusion activity. Additionally, we found that purified human cathepsin L processed immunopurified Hendra virus F(0) into F(1) and F(2) fragments. These studies introduce a novel mechanism for primary proteolytic processing of viral glycoproteins and also suggest a previously unreported biological role for cathepsin L. (+info)