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Viruses, Volume 10, Issue 2 (February 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Mammarenaviruses naturally induce infection when ingested. None the less, the role of intestinal [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle Development and Validation of a Novel Dual Luciferase Reporter Gene Assay to Quantify Ebola Virus VP24 Inhibition of IFN Signaling
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 98; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020098
Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 16 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
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Abstract
The interferon (IFN) system is the first line of defense against viral infections. Evasion of IFN signaling by Ebola viral protein 24 (VP24) is a critical event in the pathogenesis of the infection and, hence, VP24 is a potential target for drug development.
[...] Read more.
The interferon (IFN) system is the first line of defense against viral infections. Evasion of IFN signaling by Ebola viral protein 24 (VP24) is a critical event in the pathogenesis of the infection and, hence, VP24 is a potential target for drug development. Since no drugs target VP24, the identification of molecules able to inhibit VP24, restoring and possibly enhancing the IFN response, is a goal of concern. Accordingly, we developed a dual signal firefly and Renilla luciferase cell-based drug screening assay able to quantify IFN-mediated induction of Interferon Stimulated Genes (ISGs) and its inhibition by VP24. Human Embryonic Kidney 293T (HEK293T) cells were transiently transfected with a luciferase reporter gene construct driven by the promoter of ISGs, Interferon-Stimulated Response Element (ISRE). Stimulation of cells with IFN-α activated the IFN cascade leading to the expression of ISRE. Cotransfection of cells with a plasmid expressing VP24 cloned from a virus isolated during the last 2014 outbreak led to the inhibition of ISRE transcription, quantified by a luminescent signal. To adapt this system to test a large number of compounds, we performed it in 96-well plates; optimized the assay analyzing different parameters; and validated the system by calculating the Z′- and Z-factor, which showed values of 0.62 and 0.53 for IFN-α stimulation assay and VP24 inhibition assay, respectively, indicative of robust assay performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Advances in Ebolavirus, Marburgvirus, and Cuevavirus Research)
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Open AccessArticle Fowl Adenovirus 4 (FAdV-4)-Based Infectious Clone for Vaccine Vector Development and Viral Gene Function Studies
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 97; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020097
Received: 19 January 2018 / Revised: 14 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
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Abstract
Fowl adenovirus 4 (FAdV-4) is associated with economically important poultry diseases. Recent studies of fully sequenced genomes of FAdV-4 isolates suggest potential genomic regions associated with virulence and amenable for manipulation and vector development. Direct manipulation of viral genomes is cumbersome, as opposed
[...] Read more.
Fowl adenovirus 4 (FAdV-4) is associated with economically important poultry diseases. Recent studies of fully sequenced genomes of FAdV-4 isolates suggest potential genomic regions associated with virulence and amenable for manipulation and vector development. Direct manipulation of viral genomes is cumbersome, as opposed to that of infectious clones—viral genomes cloned into plasmid or cosmid vectors. In this work, we generated an infectious clone, pFAdV-4 ON1, containing the entire viral genome of a nonpathogenic FAdV-4 (ON1 isolate). pFAdV-4 ON1 was used for targeted deletion of open reading frames (ORFs) 16 and 17 and replacement with the enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) expression cassette to generate recombinant viruses. These viruses were viable, and EGFP was expressed in infected cells. Their replication, however, was significantly reduced with respect to that of the wild-type virus. These observations suggest the potential utility of FAdV-4 as a vaccine vector and the importance of ORFs 16 and 17 for virus replication at wild-type levels. To our knowledge, this is the first report of an infectious clone based on the FAdV-4 genome, and our results demonstrate its utility for studies of virulence determinants and as a platform for either vaccine or gene delivery vectors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessReview The Interactions between Host Glycobiology, Bacterial Microbiota, and Viruses in the Gut
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 96; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020096
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 20 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
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Abstract
Rotavirus (RV) and norovirus (NoV) are the major etiological agents of viral acute gastroenteritis worldwide. Host genetic factors, the histo-blood group antigens (HBGA), are associated with RV and NoV susceptibility and recent findings additionally point to HBGA as a factor modulating the intestinal
[...] Read more.
Rotavirus (RV) and norovirus (NoV) are the major etiological agents of viral acute gastroenteritis worldwide. Host genetic factors, the histo-blood group antigens (HBGA), are associated with RV and NoV susceptibility and recent findings additionally point to HBGA as a factor modulating the intestinal microbial composition. In vitro and in vivo experiments in animal models established that the microbiota enhances RV and NoV infection, uncovering a triangular interplay between RV and NoV, host glycobiology, and the intestinal microbiota that ultimately influences viral infectivity. Studies on the microbiota composition in individuals displaying different RV and NoV susceptibilities allowed the identification of potential bacterial biomarkers, although mechanistic data on the virus–host–microbiota relation are still needed. The identification of the bacterial and HBGA interactions that are exploited by RV and NoV would place the intestinal microbiota as a new target for alternative therapies aimed at preventing and treating viral gastroenteritis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viruses–Bacteria Interactions in the Gut)
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Open AccessArticle A Fluorescent Cell-Based System for Imaging Zika Virus Infection in Real-Time
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 95; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020095
Received: 12 January 2018 / Revised: 15 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
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Abstract
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a re-emerging flavivirus that is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito or through sexual contact with an infected partner. ZIKV infection during pregnancy has been associated with numerous fetal abnormalities, including prenatal lethality and microcephaly.
[...] Read more.
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a re-emerging flavivirus that is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito or through sexual contact with an infected partner. ZIKV infection during pregnancy has been associated with numerous fetal abnormalities, including prenatal lethality and microcephaly. However, until recent outbreaks in the Americas, ZIKV has been relatively understudied, and therefore the biology and pathogenesis of ZIKV infection remain incompletely understood. Better methods to study ZIKV infection in live cells could enhance our understanding of the biology of ZIKV and the mechanisms by which ZIKV contributes to fetal abnormalities. To this end, we developed a fluorescent cell-based reporter system allowing for live imaging of ZIKV-infected cells. This system utilizes the protease activity of the ZIKV non-structural proteins 2B and 3 (NS2B-NS3) to specifically mark virus-infected cells. Here, we demonstrate the utility of this fluorescent reporter for identifying cells infected by ZIKV strains of two lineages. Further, we use this system to determine that apoptosis is induced in cells directly infected with ZIKV in a cell-autonomous manner. Ultimately, approaches that can directly track ZIKV-infected cells at the single cell-level have the potential to yield new insights into the host-pathogen interactions that regulate ZIKV infection and pathogenesis. Full article
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Open AccessEditorial Expert Views on HPV Infection
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 94; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020094
Received: 1 February 2018 / Revised: 23 February 2018 / Accepted: 23 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Expert Views on HPV Infection) Printed Edition available
Open AccessReview MERS-CoV: Understanding the Latest Human Coronavirus Threat
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 93; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020093
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 28 January 2018 / Accepted: 2 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (511 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Human coronaviruses cause both upper and lower respiratory tract infections in humans. In 2012, a sixth human coronavirus (hCoV) was isolated from a patient presenting with severe respiratory illness. The 60-year-old man died as a result of renal and respiratory failure after admission
[...] Read more.
Human coronaviruses cause both upper and lower respiratory tract infections in humans. In 2012, a sixth human coronavirus (hCoV) was isolated from a patient presenting with severe respiratory illness. The 60-year-old man died as a result of renal and respiratory failure after admission to a hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The aetiological agent was eventually identified as a coronavirus and designated Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). MERS-CoV has now been reported in more than 27 countries across the Middle East, Europe, North Africa and Asia. As of July 2017, 2040 MERS-CoV laboratory confirmed cases, resulting in 712 deaths, were reported globally, with a majority of these cases from the Arabian Peninsula. This review summarises the current understanding of MERS-CoV, with special reference to the (i) genome structure; (ii) clinical features; (iii) diagnosis of infection; and (iv) treatment and vaccine development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessReview Infection and Transport of Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 in Neurons: Role of the Cytoskeleton
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 92; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020092
Received: 24 January 2018 / Revised: 16 February 2018 / Accepted: 20 February 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
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Abstract
Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) is a neuroinvasive human pathogen that has the ability to infect and replicate within epithelial cells and neurons and establish a life-long latent infection in sensory neurons. HSV-1 depends on the host cellular cytoskeleton for entry, replication,
[...] Read more.
Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) is a neuroinvasive human pathogen that has the ability to infect and replicate within epithelial cells and neurons and establish a life-long latent infection in sensory neurons. HSV-1 depends on the host cellular cytoskeleton for entry, replication, and exit. Therefore, HSV-1 has adapted mechanisms to promote its survival by exploiting the microtubule and actin cytoskeletons to direct its active transport, infection, and spread between neurons and epithelial cells during primary and recurrent infections. This review will focus on the currently known mechanisms utilized by HSV-1 to harness the neuronal cytoskeleton, molecular motors, and the secretory and exocytic pathways for efficient virus entry, axonal transport, replication, assembly, and exit from the distinct functional compartments (cell body and axon) of the highly polarized sensory neurons. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cytoskeleton in Virus Infections)
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Open AccessArticle Pharmacological Inhibition of Protein Kinase C Reduces West Nile Virus Replication
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 91; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020091
Received: 21 December 2017 / Revised: 13 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
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Abstract
Flaviviruses are relevant animal and human pathogens that include West Nile virus (WNV), Japanese encephalitis virus, dengue virus, or Zika virus, among others. Currently, no licensed therapy is available to fight flaviviral infections. Protein kinases C (PKCs) constitute a family of multifunctional lipid-dependent
[...] Read more.
Flaviviruses are relevant animal and human pathogens that include West Nile virus (WNV), Japanese encephalitis virus, dengue virus, or Zika virus, among others. Currently, no licensed therapy is available to fight flaviviral infections. Protein kinases C (PKCs) constitute a family of multifunctional lipid-dependent isoenzymes that regulate a wide variety of cellular processes (apoptosis, differentiation, proliferation, cellular transformation, motility, adhesion, etc.) being currently considered at the front line of drug development for the treatment of diverse human disorders. PKCs have also been implicated in different steps during viral replication; however, nowadays, results regarding their role in flavivirus replication are controversial. Here we demonstrate that calphostin C and chelerythrine, two broad-PKC inhibitors that target conventional, novel and atypical PKCs, significantly inhibit WNV multiplication in cell culture without affecting cell viability. A reduction of viral yields was observed in treated cells when compared with mock-treated cells. Likewise, immunofluorescence detection of viral enveloped E protein was reduced in treated cells, as was the amount of viral RNA released to the supernatant, mainly in those treated with chelerythrine. On the other hand, two PKC inhibitors specific for conventional and novel isoforms (staurosporine and enzastaurine) did not show any significant effect in WNV multiplication. These results suggested that PKCs, more probably atypical PKCs, are likely involved in WNV multiplication, although both broad-spectrum tested drugs seem to act through different mechanisms, and point to them as potential antiviral candidates for WNV, as well as for other related flaviviruses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessReview Oncotargeting by Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV): Advances in Cancer Therapy
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020090
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 12 February 2018 / Accepted: 15 February 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
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Abstract
Modern oncotherapy approaches are based on inducing controlled apoptosis in tumor cells. Although a number of apoptosis-induction approaches are available, site-specific delivery of therapeutic agents still remain the biggest hurdle in achieving the desired cancer treatment benefit. Additionally, systemic treatment-induced toxicity remains a
[...] Read more.
Modern oncotherapy approaches are based on inducing controlled apoptosis in tumor cells. Although a number of apoptosis-induction approaches are available, site-specific delivery of therapeutic agents still remain the biggest hurdle in achieving the desired cancer treatment benefit. Additionally, systemic treatment-induced toxicity remains a major limiting factor in chemotherapy. To specifically address drug-accessibility and chemotherapy side effects, oncolytic virotherapy (OV) has emerged as a novel cancer treatment alternative. In OV, recombinant viruses with higher replication capacity and stronger lytic properties are being considered for tumor cell-targeting and subsequent cell lysing. Successful application of OVs lies in achieving strict tumor-specific tropism called oncotropism, which is contingent upon the biophysical interactions of tumor cell surface receptors with viral receptors and subsequent replication of oncolytic viruses in cancer cells. In this direction, few viral vector platforms have been developed and some of these have entered pre-clinical/clinical trials. Among these, the Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-based platform shows high promise, as it is not pathogenic to humans. Further, modern molecular biology techniques such as reverse genetics tools have favorably advanced this field by creating efficient recombinant VSVs for OV; some have entered into clinical trials. In this review, we discuss the current status of VSV based oncotherapy, challenges, and future perspectives regarding its therapeutic applications in the cancer treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessReview The Alphavirus Exit Pathway: What We Know and What We Wish We Knew
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 89; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020089
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 19 February 2018 / Accepted: 20 February 2018 / Published: 22 February 2018
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Abstract
Alphaviruses are enveloped positive sense RNA viruses and include serious human pathogens, such as the encephalitic alphaviruses and Chikungunya virus. Alphaviruses are transmitted to humans primarily by mosquito vectors and include species that are classified as emerging pathogens. Alphaviruses assemble highly organized, spherical
[...] Read more.
Alphaviruses are enveloped positive sense RNA viruses and include serious human pathogens, such as the encephalitic alphaviruses and Chikungunya virus. Alphaviruses are transmitted to humans primarily by mosquito vectors and include species that are classified as emerging pathogens. Alphaviruses assemble highly organized, spherical particles that bud from the plasma membrane. In this review, we discuss what is known about the alphavirus exit pathway during a cellular infection. We describe the viral protein interactions that are critical for virus assembly/budding and the host factors that are involved, and we highlight the recent discovery of cell-to-cell transmission of alphavirus particles via intercellular extensions. Lastly, we discuss outstanding questions in the alphavirus exit pathway that may provide important avenues for future research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessArticle Spindle-E Acts Antivirally Against Alphaviruses in Mosquito Cells
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020088
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 14 February 2018 / Accepted: 15 February 2018 / Published: 18 February 2018
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Abstract
Mosquitoes transmit several human- and animal-pathogenic alphaviruses (Togaviridae family). In alphavirus-infected mosquito cells two different types of virus-specific small RNAs are produced as part of the RNA interference response: short-interfering (si)RNAs and PIWI-interacting (pi)RNAs. The siRNA pathway is generally thought to be
[...] Read more.
Mosquitoes transmit several human- and animal-pathogenic alphaviruses (Togaviridae family). In alphavirus-infected mosquito cells two different types of virus-specific small RNAs are produced as part of the RNA interference response: short-interfering (si)RNAs and PIWI-interacting (pi)RNAs. The siRNA pathway is generally thought to be the main antiviral pathway. Although an antiviral activity has been suggested for the piRNA pathway its role in host defences is not clear. Knock down of key proteins of the piRNA pathway (Ago3 and Piwi5) in Aedes aegypti-derived cells reduced the production of alphavirus chikungunya virus (CHIKV)-specific piRNAs but had no effect on virus replication. In contrast, knock down of the siRNA pathway key protein Ago2 resulted in an increase in virus replication. Similar results were obtained when expression of Piwi4 was silenced. Knock down of the helicase Spindle-E (SpnE), an essential co-factor of the piRNA pathway in Drosophila melanogaster, resulted in increased virus replication indicating that SpnE acts as an antiviral against alphaviruses such as CHIKV and the related Semliki Forest virus (SFV). Surprisingly, this effect was found to be independent of the siRNA and piRNA pathways in Ae. aegypti cells and specific for alphaviruses. This suggests a small RNA-independent antiviral function for this protein in mosquitoes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessArticle A Survey on West Nile and Usutu Viruses in Horses and Birds in Poland
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020087
Received: 19 January 2018 / Revised: 9 February 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 17 February 2018
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Abstract
West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV) are members of the family Flaviviridae which, natural life cycles involve mosquito–bird–mosquito transmission. Both represent emerging viruses in Europe with potential to cause neuroinvasive disease in humans. This study investigates the seroprevalence of serum neutralizing
[...] Read more.
West Nile virus (WNV) and Usutu virus (USUV) are members of the family Flaviviridae which, natural life cycles involve mosquito–bird–mosquito transmission. Both represent emerging viruses in Europe with potential to cause neuroinvasive disease in humans. This study investigates the seroprevalence of serum neutralizing antibodies to WNV and to USUV in birds and in horses in Poland. Antibodies against WNV and USUV were detected in 5 (35.7%) and in 1 (7.14%) of 14 birds and in 62 (15.08%) and in 115 (27.98%) of 411 horses, respectively. Twenty-one WNV serologically positive horses (33.87%) and 67 USUV serologically positive horses (58.26%) did not travel outside Polish borders. Given the high abundance of potentially competent mosquito species in Poland, high populations of horses and different bird species, our findings highlight implementation of active control programs, including monitoring of geographic spread and dynamics of WNV and USUV transmission in both primary and accidental hosts. It is also important to improve public health awareness about the disease these viruses may cause. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Chondrocytes Contribute to Alphaviral Disease Pathogenesis as a Source of Virus Replication and Soluble Factor Production
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 86; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020086
Received: 26 January 2018 / Revised: 12 February 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 15 February 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3840 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Arthritogenic alphavirus infections often result in debilitating musculoskeletal disorders that affect the joints, muscle, and bone. In order to evaluate the infection profile of primary human skeletal muscle and chondrocyte cells to Ross River virus (RRV) in vitro, cells were infected at a
[...] Read more.
Arthritogenic alphavirus infections often result in debilitating musculoskeletal disorders that affect the joints, muscle, and bone. In order to evaluate the infection profile of primary human skeletal muscle and chondrocyte cells to Ross River virus (RRV) in vitro, cells were infected at a multiplicity of infection (MOI) of 1 over a period of two days. Viral titers were determined by plaque assay and cytokine expression by Bio-Plex® assays using the supernatants harvested. Gene expression studies were conducted using total RNA isolated from cells. Firstly, we show that RRV RNA is detected in chondrocytes from infected mice in vivo. Both human primary skeletal muscle and chondrocyte cells are able to support productive RRV infection in vitro. We also report the production of soluble host factors including the upregulation of heparanase (HPSE) and inflammatory host factors such as interleukin-6 (IL-6), monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1), RANTES (regulated on activation, normal T cell expressed and secreted), interferon gamma (IFN-γ), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), which are also present during clinical disease in humans. Our study is the first to demonstrate that human chondrocyte cells are permissive to RRV infection, support the production of infectious virus, and produce soluble factors including HPSE, which may contribute to joint degradation and the pathogenesis of disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessReview The Microbial Zoo in the C. elegans Intestine: Bacteria, Fungi and Viruses
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020085
Received: 7 January 2018 / Revised: 8 February 2018 / Accepted: 11 February 2018 / Published: 14 February 2018
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Abstract
C. elegans is an invaluable model organism that has been a driving force in many fundamental biological discoveries. However, it is only in the past two decades that it has been applied to host–pathogen interaction studies. These studies have been facilitated by the
[...] Read more.
C. elegans is an invaluable model organism that has been a driving force in many fundamental biological discoveries. However, it is only in the past two decades that it has been applied to host–pathogen interaction studies. These studies have been facilitated by the discoveries of natural microbes that infect C. elegans, including bacteria, fungi and viruses. Notably, many of these microbes share a common site of infection, the C. elegans intestine. Furthermore, the recent descriptions of a natural gut microbiota in C. elegans raise the possibility that this could be a novel model system for microbiome and trans-kingdom interaction studies. Here we review studies of C. elegans host–microbe interactions with a particular focus on the intestine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viruses–Bacteria Interactions in the Gut)
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Open AccessReview Mosquitoes as Suitable Vectors for Alphaviruses
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020084
Received: 8 January 2018 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 8 February 2018 / Published: 14 February 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1315 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Alphaviruses are arthropod-borne viruses and are predominantly transmitted via mosquito vectors. This vector preference by alphaviruses raises the important question of the determinants that contribute to vector competence. There are several tissue barriers of the mosquito that the virus must overcome in order
[...] Read more.
Alphaviruses are arthropod-borne viruses and are predominantly transmitted via mosquito vectors. This vector preference by alphaviruses raises the important question of the determinants that contribute to vector competence. There are several tissue barriers of the mosquito that the virus must overcome in order to establish a productive infection. Of importance are the midgut, basal lamina and the salivary glands. Infection of the salivary glands is crucial for virus transmission during the mosquito’s subsequent bloodfeed. Other factors that may contribute to vector competence include the microflora and parasites present in the mosquito, environmental conditions, the molecular determinants of the virus to adapt to the vector, as well as the effect of co-infection with other viruses. Though mosquito innate immunity is a contributing factor to vector competence, it will not be discussed in this review. Detailed understanding of these factors will be instrumental in minimising transmission of alphaviral diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessArticle Impact of Mutations in the Hemagglutinin of H10N7 Viruses Isolated from Seals on Virus Replication in Avian and Human Cells
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020083
Received: 3 January 2018 / Revised: 8 February 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 14 February 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2010 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Wild birds are the reservoir for low-pathogenic avian influenza viruses, which are frequently transmitted to domestic birds and occasionally to mammals. In 2014, an H10N7 virus caused severe mortality in harbor seals in northeastern Europe. Although the hemagglutinin (HA) of this virus was
[...] Read more.
Wild birds are the reservoir for low-pathogenic avian influenza viruses, which are frequently transmitted to domestic birds and occasionally to mammals. In 2014, an H10N7 virus caused severe mortality in harbor seals in northeastern Europe. Although the hemagglutinin (HA) of this virus was closely related to H10 of avian H10N4 virus, it possessed unique nonsynonymous mutations, particularly in the HA1 subunit in or adjacent to the receptor binding domain and proteolytic cleavage site. Here, the impact of these mutations on virus replication was studied in vitro. Using reverse genetics, an avian H10N4 virus was cloned, and nine recombinant viruses carrying one of eight unique mutations or the complete HA from the seal virus were rescued. Receptor binding affinity, replication in avian and mammalian cell cultures, cell-to-cell spread, and HA cleavability of these recombinant viruses were studied. Results show that wild-type recombinant H10N4 virus has high affinity to avian-type sialic acid receptors and no affinity to mammalian-type receptors. The H10N7 virus exhibits dual receptor binding affinity. Interestingly, Q220L (H10 numbering) in the rim of the receptor binding pocket increased the affinity of the H10N4 virus to mammal-type receptors and completely abolished the affinity to avian-type receptors. No remarkable differences in cell-to-cell spread or HA cleavability were observed. All viruses, including the wild-type H10N7 virus, replicated at higher levels in chicken cells than in human cells. These results indicate that H10N7 acquired adaptive mutations (e.g., Q220L) to enhance replication in mammals and retained replication efficiency in the original avian host. Full article
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Open AccessReview DNA Tumor Virus Regulation of Host DNA Methylation and Its Implications for Immune Evasion and Oncogenesis
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020082
Received: 18 January 2018 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
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Abstract
Viruses have evolved various mechanisms to evade host immunity and ensure efficient viral replication and persistence. Several DNA tumor viruses modulate host DNA methyltransferases for epigenetic dysregulation of immune-related gene expression in host cells. The host immune responses suppressed by virus-induced aberrant DNA
[...] Read more.
Viruses have evolved various mechanisms to evade host immunity and ensure efficient viral replication and persistence. Several DNA tumor viruses modulate host DNA methyltransferases for epigenetic dysregulation of immune-related gene expression in host cells. The host immune responses suppressed by virus-induced aberrant DNA methylation are also frequently involved in antitumor immune responses. Here, we describe viral mechanisms and virus–host interactions by which DNA tumor viruses regulate host DNA methylation to evade antiviral immunity, which may contribute to the generation of an immunosuppressive microenvironment during cancer development. Recent trials of immunotherapies have shown promising results to treat multiple cancers; however, a significant number of non-responders necessitate identifying additional targets for cancer immunotherapies. Thus, understanding immune evasion mechanisms of cancer-causing viruses may provide great insights for reversing immune suppression to prevent and treat associated cancers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Subversion of Transcriptional Control)
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Open AccessArticle The Application of NHEJ-CRISPR/Cas9 and Cre-Lox System in the Generation of Bivalent Duck Enteritis Virus Vaccine against Avian Influenza Virus
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020081
Received: 2 January 2018 / Revised: 1 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
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Abstract
Duck-targeted vaccines to protect against avian influenza are critically needed to aid in influenza disease control efforts in regions where ducks are endemic for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). Duck enteritis virus (DEV) is a promising candidate viral vector for development of vaccines
[...] Read more.
Duck-targeted vaccines to protect against avian influenza are critically needed to aid in influenza disease control efforts in regions where ducks are endemic for highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). Duck enteritis virus (DEV) is a promising candidate viral vector for development of vaccines targeting ducks, owing to its large genome and narrow host range. The clustered regularly interspaced palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system is a versatile gene-editing tool that has proven beneficial for gene modification and construction of recombinant DNA viral vectored vaccines. Currently, there are two commonly used methods for gene insertion: non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ) and homology-directed repair (HDR). Owing to its advantages in efficiency and independence from molecular requirements of the homologous arms, we utilized NHEJ-dependent CRISPR/Cas9 to insert the influenza hemagglutinin (HA) antigen expression cassette into the DEV genome. The insert was initially tagged with reporter green fluorescence protein (GFP), and a Cre-Lox system was later used to remove the GFP gene insert. Furthermore, a universal donor plasmid system was established by introducing double bait sequences that were independent of the viral genome. In summary, we provide proof of principle for generating recombinant DEV viral vectored vaccines against the influenza virus using an integrated NHEJ-CRISPR/Cas9 and Cre-Lox system. Full article
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Open AccessMeeting Report The Intersection of HPV Epidemiology, Genomics and Mechanistic Studies of HPV-Mediated Carcinogenesis
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020080
Received: 9 December 2017 / Revised: 24 January 2018 / Accepted: 12 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (685 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Of the ~60 human papillomavirus (HPV) genotypes that infect the cervicovaginal epithelium, only 12–13 “high-risk” types are well-established as causing cervical cancer, with HPV16 accounting for over half of all cases worldwide. While HPV16 is the most important carcinogenic type, variants of HPV16
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Of the ~60 human papillomavirus (HPV) genotypes that infect the cervicovaginal epithelium, only 12–13 “high-risk” types are well-established as causing cervical cancer, with HPV16 accounting for over half of all cases worldwide. While HPV16 is the most important carcinogenic type, variants of HPV16 can differ in their carcinogenicity by 10-fold or more in epidemiologic studies. Strong genotype-phenotype associations embedded in the small 8-kb HPV16 genome motivate molecular studies to understand the underlying molecular mechanisms. Understanding the mechanisms of HPV genomic findings is complicated by the linkage of HPV genome variants. A panel of experts in various disciplines gathered on 21 November 2016 to discuss the interdisciplinary science of HPV oncogenesis. Here, we summarize the discussion of the complexity of the viral–host interaction and highlight important next steps for selected applied basic laboratory studies guided by epidemiological genomic findings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Expert Views on HPV Infection) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessReview Cytoskeletons in the Closet—Subversion in Alphaherpesvirus Infections
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020079
Received: 19 December 2017 / Revised: 30 January 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
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Abstract
Actin filaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments form the cytoskeleton of vertebrate cells. Involved in maintaining cell integrity and structure, facilitating cargo and vesicle transport, remodelling surface structures and motility, the cytoskeleton is necessary for the successful life of a cell. Because of the
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Actin filaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments form the cytoskeleton of vertebrate cells. Involved in maintaining cell integrity and structure, facilitating cargo and vesicle transport, remodelling surface structures and motility, the cytoskeleton is necessary for the successful life of a cell. Because of the broad range of functions these filaments are involved in, they are common targets for viral pathogens, including the alphaherpesviruses. Human-tropic alphaherpesviruses are prevalent pathogens carried by more than half of the world’s population; comprising herpes simplex virus (types 1 and 2) and varicella-zoster virus, these viruses are characterised by their ability to establish latency in sensory neurons. This review will discuss the known mechanisms involved in subversion of and transport via the cytoskeleton during alphaherpesvirus infections, focusing on protein-protein interactions and pathways that have recently been identified. Studies on related alphaherpesviruses whose primary host is not human, along with comparisons to more distantly related beta and gammaherpesviruses, are also presented in this review. The need to decipher as-yet-unknown mechanisms exploited by viruses to hijack cytoskeletal components—to reveal the hidden cytoskeletons in the closet—will also be addressed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cytoskeleton in Virus Infections)
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Open AccessArticle First Diagnosed Case of Camelpox Virus in Israel
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020078
Received: 10 January 2018 / Revised: 6 February 2018 / Accepted: 12 February 2018 / Published: 13 February 2018
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Abstract
An outbreak of a disease in camels with skin lesions was reported in Israel during 2016. To identify the etiological agent of this illness, we employed a multidisciplinary diagnostic approach. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis of lesion material revealed the presence of an
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An outbreak of a disease in camels with skin lesions was reported in Israel during 2016. To identify the etiological agent of this illness, we employed a multidisciplinary diagnostic approach. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis of lesion material revealed the presence of an orthopox-like virus, based on its characteristic brick shape. The virus from the skin lesions successfully infected chorioallantoic membranes and induced cytopathic effect in Vero cells, which were subsequently positively stained by an orthopox-specific antibody. The definite identification of the virus was accomplished by two independent qPCR, one of which was developed in this study, followed by sequencing of several regions of the viral genome. The qPCR and sequencing results confirmed the presence of camelpox virus (CMLV), and indicated that it is different from the previously annotated CMLV sequence available from GenBank. This is the first reported case of CMLV in Israel, and the first description of the isolated CMLV subtype. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Open AccessArticle Blood Mitochondrial DNA Content in HIV-Exposed Uninfected Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020077
Received: 23 November 2017 / Revised: 29 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 February 2018 / Published: 11 February 2018
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Abstract
Long-term outcomes of perinatal exposure to maternal antiretroviral therapy in HIV-exposed uninfected (HEU) children are unknown. However, both HIV antiretroviral therapy and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have been associated with mitochondrial alterations. Leukocyte mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) content can serve as a marker for
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Long-term outcomes of perinatal exposure to maternal antiretroviral therapy in HIV-exposed uninfected (HEU) children are unknown. However, both HIV antiretroviral therapy and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have been associated with mitochondrial alterations. Leukocyte mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) content can serve as a marker for mitochondrial dysfunction. In this cross-sectional, nested case-control study, HEU children with ASD were matched approximately 1:3 on age, sex, and ethnicity to HEU children without ASD, HIV-unexposed uninfected (HUU) controls, and HUU children with ASD. Leukocyte mtDNA content was measured using quantitative PCR. Among 299 HEU in this study, 14 (4.7%) were diagnosed with ASD, which is higher than the general population prevalence estimates. HEU children without ASD and HUU children with ASD had higher mtDNA content than HUU controls. HEU children with ASD had significantly higher mtDNA content than all other study groups. Our results suggest a clear association between elevated leukocyte mtDNA content and both HEU and ASD status. This may implicate mitochondrial dysfunction as a contributor to the high ASD prevalence observed in our cohort. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Homage to Mark Wainberg)
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Open AccessReview RNA Dependent RNA Polymerases: Insights from Structure, Function and Evolution
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020076
Received: 27 November 2017 / Revised: 30 January 2018 / Accepted: 3 February 2018 / Published: 10 February 2018
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Abstract
RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) is one of the most versatile enzymes of RNA viruses that is indispensable for replicating the genome as well as for carrying out transcription. The core structural features of RdRps are conserved, despite the divergence in their sequences.
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RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) is one of the most versatile enzymes of RNA viruses that is indispensable for replicating the genome as well as for carrying out transcription. The core structural features of RdRps are conserved, despite the divergence in their sequences. The structure of RdRp resembles that of a cupped right hand and consists of fingers, palm and thumb subdomains. The catalysis involves the participation of conserved aspartates and divalent metal ions. Complexes of RdRps with substrates, inhibitors and metal ions provide a comprehensive view of their functional mechanism and offer valuable insights regarding the development of antivirals. In this article, we provide an overview of the structural aspects of RdRps and their complexes from the Group III, IV and V viruses and their structure-based phylogeny. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structure-Function Relationships in Viral Polymerases)
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Open AccessArticle Mammarenaviral Infection Is Dependent on Directional Exposure to and Release from Polarized Intestinal Epithelia
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020075
Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 2 February 2018 / Accepted: 8 February 2018 / Published: 10 February 2018
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Abstract
Mammarenavirusesare single-stranded RNA viruses with a bisegmented ambisense genome. Ingestion has been shown as a natural route of transmission for both Lassa virus (LASV) and Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV). Due to the mechanism of transmission, epithelial tissues are among the first host cells
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Mammarenavirusesare single-stranded RNA viruses with a bisegmented ambisense genome. Ingestion has been shown as a natural route of transmission for both Lassa virus (LASV) and Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV). Due to the mechanism of transmission, epithelial tissues are among the first host cells to come in contact with the viruses, and as such they potentially play a role in spread of virus to naïve hosts. The role of the intestinal epithelia during arenavirus infection remains to be uncharacterized. We have utilized a well-established cell culture model, Caco-2, to investigate the role of intestinal epithelia during intragastric infection. We found that LCMV-Armstrong, LCMV-WE, and Mopeia (MOPV) release infectious progeny via similar patterns. However, the reassortant virus, ML-29, containing the L segment of MOPV and S segment of LASV, exhibits a unique pattern of viral release relative to LCMV and MOPV. Furthermore, we have determined attachment efficacy to Caco-2 cells is potentially responsible for observed replication kinetics of these viruses in a polarized Caco-2 cell model. Collectively, our data shows that viral dissemination and interaction with intestinal epithelia may be host, tissue, and viral specific. Full article
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Open AccessArticle ALV Integration-Associated Hypomethylation at the TERT Promoter Locus
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020074
Received: 18 January 2018 / Revised: 6 February 2018 / Accepted: 8 February 2018 / Published: 10 February 2018
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Abstract
Avian leukosis virus (ALV) is a simple retrovirus that can induce B-cell lymphoma in chicken(s) and other birds by insertional mutagenesis. The promoter region of telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) has been identified as an important integration site for tumorigenesis. Tumors with TERT promoter
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Avian leukosis virus (ALV) is a simple retrovirus that can induce B-cell lymphoma in chicken(s) and other birds by insertional mutagenesis. The promoter region of telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) has been identified as an important integration site for tumorigenesis. Tumors with TERT promoter integrations are associated with increased TERT expression. The mechanism of this activation is still under investigation. We asked whether insertion of proviral DNA perturbs the epigenome of the integration site and, subsequently, impacts the regulation of neighboring genes. DNA cytosine methylation, which generally acts to suppress transcription, is one major form of epigenetic regulation. In this study, we examine allele-specific methylation patterns of genomic DNA from chicken tumors by bisulfite sequencing. We observed that alleles with TERT promoter integrations are associated with decreased methylation in the host genome near the site of integration. Our observations suggest that insertion of ALV in the TERT promoter region may induce expression of TERT through inhibition of maintenance methylation in the TERT promoter region. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Antibody Responses to Marburg Virus in Egyptian Rousette Bats and Their Role in Protection against Infection
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020073
Received: 9 January 2018 / Revised: 31 January 2018 / Accepted: 2 February 2018 / Published: 10 February 2018
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Abstract
Egyptian rousette bats (ERBs) are reservoir hosts for the Marburg virus (MARV). The immune dynamics and responses to MARV infection in ERBs are poorly understood, and limited information exists on the role of antibodies in protection of ERBs against MARV infection. Here, we
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Egyptian rousette bats (ERBs) are reservoir hosts for the Marburg virus (MARV). The immune dynamics and responses to MARV infection in ERBs are poorly understood, and limited information exists on the role of antibodies in protection of ERBs against MARV infection. Here, we determine the duration of maternal immunity to MARV in juvenile ERBs, and evaluate the duration of the antibody response to MARV in bats naturally or experimentally infected with the virus. We further explore whether antibodies in previously naturally exposed bats is fully protective against experimental reinfection with MARV. Maternal immunity was lost in juvenile ERBs by 5 months of age. Antibodies to MARV remained detectable in 67% of experimentally infected bats approximately 4 months post inoculation (p.i.), while antibodies to MARV remained present in 84% of naturally exposed bats at least 11 months after capture. Reinfection of seropositive ERBs with MARV produced an anamnestic response from day 5 p.i. Although PCR-defined viremia was present in 73.3% of reinfected ERBs, replicating virus was recovered from the serum of only one bat on day 3 p.i. The negative PCR results in the salivary glands, intestines, bladders and reproductive tracts of reinfected bats, and the apparent absence of MARV in the majority of swabs collected from these bats suggest that reinfection may only play a minor role in the transmission and maintenance of MARV amongst ERBs in nature. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Advances in Ebolavirus, Marburgvirus, and Cuevavirus Research)
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Open AccessArticle Favipiravir and Ribavirin Inhibit Replication of Asian and African Strains of Zika Virus in Different Cell Models
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020072
Received: 3 January 2018 / Revised: 29 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 February 2018 / Published: 9 February 2018
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Abstract
Zika virus (ZIKV) has recently emerged as a new public health threat. ZIKV infections have caused a wide spectrum of neurological diseases, such as Guillain–Barré syndrome, myelitis, meningoencephalitis, and congenital microcephaly. No effective therapies currently exist for treating patients infected with ZIKV. Herein,
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Zika virus (ZIKV) has recently emerged as a new public health threat. ZIKV infections have caused a wide spectrum of neurological diseases, such as Guillain–Barré syndrome, myelitis, meningoencephalitis, and congenital microcephaly. No effective therapies currently exist for treating patients infected with ZIKV. Herein, we evaluated the anti-viral activity of favipiravir (T-705) and ribavirin against Asian and African strains of ZIKV using different cell models, including human neuronal progenitor cells (hNPCs), human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs), human lung adenocarcinoma cells (A549) and Vero cells. Cells were treated with favipiravir or ribavirin and effects on ZIKV replication were determined using quantitative real-time PCR and plaque assay. Our results demonstrate that favipiravir or ribavirin treatment significantly inhibited ZIKV replication in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, favipiravir treatment of ZIKV-infected hNPCs led to reduced cell death, enhanced AKT pathway phosphorylation, and increased expression of anti-apoptotic factor B cell lymphoma 2. In conclusion, our results demonstrate conclusively that favipiravir inhibits ZIKV replication and prevents cell death, and can be a promising intervention for ZIKV-associated disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
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Open AccessReview Nonstructural Proteins of Alphavirus—Potential Targets for Drug Development
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020071
Received: 7 January 2018 / Revised: 2 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 9 February 2018
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Abstract
Alphaviruses are enveloped, positive single-stranded RNA viruses, typically transmitted by arthropods. They often cause arthralgia or encephalitic diseases in infected humans and there is currently no targeted antiviral treatment available. The re-emergence of alphaviruses in Asia, Europe, and the Americas over the last
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Alphaviruses are enveloped, positive single-stranded RNA viruses, typically transmitted by arthropods. They often cause arthralgia or encephalitic diseases in infected humans and there is currently no targeted antiviral treatment available. The re-emergence of alphaviruses in Asia, Europe, and the Americas over the last decade, including chikungunya and o’nyong’nyong viruses, have intensified the search for selective inhibitors. In this review, we highlight key molecular determinants within the alphavirus replication complex that have been identified as viral targets, focusing on their structure and functionality in viral dissemination. We also summarize recent structural data of these viral targets and discuss how these could serve as templates to facilitate structure-based drug design and development of small molecule inhibitors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessReview The Regulation of Translation in Alphavirus-Infected Cells
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020070
Received: 15 January 2018 / Revised: 2 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 8 February 2018
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Abstract
Sindbis virus (SINV) contains an RNA genome of positive polarity with two open reading frames (ORFs). The first ORF is translated from the genomic RNA (gRNA), rendering the viral non-structural proteins, whereas the second ORF is translated from a subgenomic mRNA (sgRNA), which
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Sindbis virus (SINV) contains an RNA genome of positive polarity with two open reading frames (ORFs). The first ORF is translated from the genomic RNA (gRNA), rendering the viral non-structural proteins, whereas the second ORF is translated from a subgenomic mRNA (sgRNA), which directs the synthesis of viral structural proteins. SINV infection strongly inhibits host cell translation through a variety of different mechanisms, including the phosphorylation of the eukaryotic initiation factor eIF2α and the redistribution of cellular proteins from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. A number of motifs have been identified in SINV sgRNA, including a hairpin downstream of the AUG initiation codon, which is involved in the translatability of the viral sgRNA when eIF2 is inactivated. Moreover, a 3′-UTR motif containing three stem-loop structures is involved in the enhancement of translation in insect cells, but not in mammalian cells. Accordingly, SINV sgRNA has evolved several structures to efficiently compete for the cellular translational machinery. Mechanistically, sgRNA translation involves scanning of the 5′-UTR following a non-canonical mode and without the requirement for several initiation factors. Indeed, sgRNA-directed polypeptide synthesis occurs even after eIF4G cleavage or inactivation of eIF4A by selective inhibitors. Remarkably, eIF2α phosphorylation does not hamper sgRNA translation during the late phase of SINV infection. SINV sgRNA thus constitutes a unique model of a capped viral mRNA that is efficiently translated in the absence of several canonical initiation factors. The present review will mainly focus in the non-canonical mechanism of translation of SINV sgRNA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alphavirus Research)
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Open AccessReview Transcytosis Involvement in Transport System and Endothelial Permeability of Vascular Leakage during Dengue Virus Infection
Viruses 2018, 10(2), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10020069
Received: 14 December 2017 / Revised: 19 January 2018 / Accepted: 1 February 2018 / Published: 8 February 2018
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Abstract
The major role of endothelial cells is to maintain homeostasis of vascular permeability and to preserve the integrity of vascular vessels to prevent fluid leakage. Properly functioning endothelial cells promote physiological balance and stability for blood circulation and fluid components. A monolayer of
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The major role of endothelial cells is to maintain homeostasis of vascular permeability and to preserve the integrity of vascular vessels to prevent fluid leakage. Properly functioning endothelial cells promote physiological balance and stability for blood circulation and fluid components. A monolayer of endothelial cells has the ability to regulate paracellular and transcellular pathways for transport proteins, solutes, and fluid. In addition to the paracellular pathway, the transcellular pathway is another route of endothelial permeability that mediates vascular permeability under physiologic conditions. The transcellular pathway was found to be associated with an assortment of disease pathogeneses. The clinical manifestation of severe dengue infection in humans is vascular leakage and hemorrhagic diatheses. This review explores and describes the transcellular pathway, which is an alternate route of vascular permeability during dengue infection that corresponds with the pathologic finding of intact tight junction. This pathway may be the route of albumin transport that causes endothelial dysfunction during dengue virus infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cytoskeleton in Virus Infections)
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