Cell cycle arrest mediated by hepatitis delta antigen. (1/80)

Hepatitis delta antigen (HDAg) is the only viral-encoded protein of the hepatitis delta virus (HDV). This protein has been extensively characterized with respect to its biochemical and functional properties. However, the molecular mechanism responsible for persistent HDV infection is not yet clear. Previously, we reported that overexpression of HDAg protects insect cells from baculovirus-induced cytolysis [Hwang, S.B. Park, K.-J. and Kim, Y.S. (1998) Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 244, 652-658]. Here we report that HDAg mediates cell cycle arrest when overexpressed in recombinant baculovirus-infected insect cells. Flow cytometry analysis has shown that HDAg expression in Spodoptera frugiperda cells causes an accumulation of substantial amounts of polyploid DNA in the absence of cell division. This phenomenon may be partly responsible for the persistent infection of chronic HDV patients.  (+info)

Unique properties of the large antigen of hepatitis delta virus. (2/80)

The large form of the hepatitis delta virus (HDV) protein (L) can be isoprenylated near its C terminus, and this modification is considered essential for particle assembly. Using gel electrophoresis, we separated L into two species of similar mobilities. The slower species could be labeled by the incorporation of [(14)C]mevalonolactone and is interpreted to be isoprenylated L (L(i)). In serum particles, infected liver, transfected cells, and assembled particles, 25 to 85% of L was isoprenylated. Isoprenylation was also demonstrated by (14)C incorporation in vitro with a rabbit reticulocyte coupled transcription-translation system. However, the species obtained migrated even slower than that detected by labeling in vivo. Next, in studies of HDV particle assembly in the presence of the surface proteins of human hepatitis B virus, we observed the following. (i) Relative to L, L(i) was preferentially assembled into virus-like particles. (ii) L(i) could coassemble the unmodified L and the small delta protein, S. (iii) In contrast, a form of L with a deletion in the dimerization domain was both isoprenylated and assembled, but it could not support the coassembly of S. Finally, to test the expectation that the isoprenylation of L would increase its hydrophobicity, we applied a phase separation strategy based on micelle formation with the nonionic detergent Triton X-114. We showed the following. (i) The unique C-terminal 19 amino acids present on L relative to S caused a significant increase in the hydrophobicity. (ii) This increase was independent of isoprenylation. (iii) In contrast, other, artificial modifications at either the N or C terminus of S did not increase the hydrophobicity. (iv) The increased hydrophobicity was not sufficient for particle assembly; nevertheless, we speculate that it might facilitate virion assembly.  (+info)

Antigenic domains of the open reading frame 2-encoded protein of hepatitis E virus. (3/80)

The antigenic composition of the hepatitis E virus (HEV) protein encoded by open reading frame 2 (ORF2) was determined by using synthetic peptides. Three sets of overlapping 18-, 25-, and 30-mer peptides, with each set spanning the entire ORF2 protein of the HEV Burma strain, were synthesized. All synthetic peptides were tested by enzyme immunoassay against a panel of 32 anti-HEV-positive serum specimens obtained from acutely HEV-infected persons. Six antigenic domains within the ORF2 protein were identified. Domains 1 and 6 located at the N and C termini of the ORF2 protein, respectively, contain strong immunoglobulin G (IgG) and IgM antigenic epitopes that can be efficiently modeled with peptides of different sizes. In contrast, antigenic epitopes identified within the two central domains (3 and 4) were modeled more efficiently with 30-mer peptides than with either 18- or 25-mers. Domain 2 located at amino acids (aa) 143 to 222 was modeled best with 25-mer peptides. A few 30-mer synthetic peptides derived from domain 5 identified at aa 490 to 579 demonstrated strong IgM antigenic reactivity. Several 30-mer synthetic peptides derived from domains 1, 4, and 6 immunoreacted with IgG or IgM with more than 70% of anti-HEV-positive serum specimens. Thus, the results of this study demonstrate the existence of six diagnostically relevant antigenic domains within the HEV ORF2 protein.  (+info)

Characterization of the phosphorylated forms and the phosphorylated residues of hepatitis delta virus delta antigens. (4/80)

Hepatitis delta virus (HDV) replication requires both the cellular RNA polymerase and one virus-encoded protein, small delta antigen (S-HDAg). S-HDAg has been shown to be a phosphoprotein, but its phosphorylation status is not yet clear. In this study, we employed three methods to address this question. A special two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, namely, nonequilibrium pH gradient electrophoresis, was used to separate the very basic S-HDAg. By carefully adjusting the pH of solubilization solution, the ampholyte composition, and the appropriate electrophoresis time periods, we were able to clearly resolve S-HDAg into two phosphorylated isoforms and one unphosphorylated form. In contrast, the viral large delta antigen (L-HDAg) can only be separated into one phosphorylated and one unphosphorylated form. By metabolic (32)P labeling, both immunoprecipitated S-HDAg and L-HDAg were found to incorporate radioactive phosphate. The extent of S-HDAg phosphorylation was increased upon 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate treatment, while that of L-HDAg was not affected. Finally, phosphoamino acid analysis identified serine and threonine as the phospho residues in the labeled S-HDAg and only serine in the L-HDAg. Therefore, HDV S- and L-HDAgs differ in their phosphorylation patterns, which may account for their distinct biological functions.  (+info)

Bone marrow transplantation for paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria. (5/80)

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH) is an acquired clonal disease of the hemopoietic stem cell (HSC) characterized by intravascular hemolysis and increased risk of venous thrombosis. There are different therapeutic approaches for PNH which do not cure the disease, but can decrease its complications. Allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT) may cure PNH. We reports here our experience of seven PNH patients who underwent allogeneic BMT. DESIGN AND METHODS: Between January 1991 and January 1999 seven patients with PNH, aged 23 to 37, were transplanted with unmanipulated bone marrow from HLA identical siblings. Median time from diagnosis to BMT was 2.5 years (range: 1-16). All patients were transfusion-dependent and had received various treatments before BMT: steroids, vitamins, cyclosporin A (CyA), growth factors. One patient had also been treated with anti-thymocyte globulin. One patient was HbsAg positive and one anti-HCV positive. At the time of BMT the median value of hemoglobin (Hb) was 9 g/dL (range 6.5-11), white blood cells 5&10(9)/L (range: 2.9-7.7), platelets 97&10(9)/L (range: 31-355), LDH: 2726 U/L. The conditioning regimen was cyclophosphamide (160 mg/kg) and busulfan (10-14 mg/kg), followed by unmanipulated bone marrow (median of 5&10(8) cells/kg) and CyA (+MTX in two patients) for prophylaxis of graft-versus-host disease (GvHD). RESULTS: All seven patients are alive, full chimeras, with complete hematologic recovery and no evidence of PNH, at a median follow up of 51 months post-BMT (6-103). Time to achieve a granulocyte count of 0.5&10(9)/L, platelets 30&10(9)/L and Hb 10 g/dL was respectively 16, 19 and 22 days. Acute GvHD was limited or mild in six patients, and severe in one. Chronic GvHD was extensive in two patients. INTERPRETATION AND CONCLUSIONS: This study confirms that HLA identical sibling BMT is an effective therapeutic option for PNH, also in the hemolytic phase of the disease: it also suggests that HBV and HCV infections are not an absolute contraindication.  (+info)

Prevalence of antibody to hepatitis E virus among rodents in the United States. (6/80)

The recent identification of antibody to hepatitis E virus (HEV) in pigs, sheep, and cattle and characterization of an HEV isolated from domestic pigs suggest animal reservoirs for this virus. To investigate whether rodents might be a natural reservoir of HEV, the prevalence of anti-HEV was determined among a variety of species throughout the United States. Serum samples were obtained from 806 rodents of 26 species in 15 genera. Anti-HEV prevalence was assessed by 2 EIAs (mosaic protein- and 55-kDa protein-based), which gave concordant results. The highest prevalence of antibody was found in the genus Rattus (59.7%; 166/278). Overall, rodents from urban habitats had a significantly higher prevalence of anti-HEV than did animals captured from rural areas. A high prevalence of anti-HEV was found in animals captured on mainland versus barrier islands. The results from this study provide convincing evidence of widespread HEV or HEV-like infection in rodents of the United States.  (+info)

Detection of hepatitis C virus RNA sequences in B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. (7/80)

Serologic testing shows that hepatitis C virus (HCV) may have a role in the pathogenesis of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas (B-cell NHLs). We tried to demonstrate HCV RNA sequences in paraffin-embedded tissue from B-cell NHLs by reverse-transcription double polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and Southern blotting. We studied 31 consecutive cases of B-cell NHLs; lymph nodes from 32 patients with diseases other than B-cell NHL were negative controls. Positive-strand HCV RNA was tested with primers for the 5' untranslated region. Replicative negative strand HCV RNA was tested with strand-specific RT-PCR for the 5' untranslated region. Immunohistochemical staining for HCV was done using an antibody to HCV core protein. Positive-strand HCV RNA was detected in 8 patients with B-cell NHL; negative-strand HCV RNA was detected in 6 of these cases, indicating viral replication. All control cases were negative for HCV RNA. Immunohistochemistry showed no staining of lymphoma cells for HCV core proteins in any case. HCV and B-cell NHLs may be associated. RT-PCR on paraffin-embedded lymphoma tissue is an alternative method of testing for HCV. The value of immunohistochemistry could not be ascertained. The exact role of HCV in the pathogenesis of B-cell NHL needs to be studied further.  (+info)

Fine mapping of virus-neutralizing epitopes on hepatitis B virus PreS1. (8/80)

We identified the epitopes on the preS1 which induce antibodies that neutralize both ad and ay subtypes of hepatitis B virus (HBV). Previously we generated murine monoclonal antibodies KR359 and KR127 that bind specifically to the preS1 of HBV. In this study we have performed fine mappings of the epitopes of the antibodies by examining their reactivity with GST fusion proteins, which contain a series of deletion mutants of the preS1. KR359 and KR127 specifically recognize aa 19-26 and 37-45 of the preS1, respectively. The antibodies neutralized both adr and ayw subtypes of the virus in an in vitro neutralization assay using in vitro infection of adult human hepatocyte primary culture by HBV. The epitopes showed little sequence divergence and the antibodies bound to the preS1 of all the HBV subtypes and variants tested.  (+info)