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Multifunctional Nature of the Arenavirus RING Finger Protein Z
Institut für Virologie der Philipps-Universität Marburg, Hans-Meerwein-Str. 2, 35043 Marburg, Germany
These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 October 2012; in revised form: 4 November 2012 / Accepted: 5 November 2012 / Published: 9 November 2012
Abstract: Arenaviruses are a family of enveloped negative-stranded RNA viruses that can cause severe human disease ranging from encephalitis symptoms to fulminant hemorrhagic fever. The bi‑segmented RNA genome encodes four polypeptides: the nucleoprotein NP, the surface glycoprotein GP, the polymerase L, and the RING finger protein Z. Although it is the smallest arenavirus protein with a length of 90 to 99 amino acids and a molecular weight of approx. 11 kDa, the Z protein has multiple functions in the viral life cycle including (i) regulation of viral RNA synthesis, (ii) orchestration of viral assembly and budding, (iii) interaction with host cell proteins, and (iv) interferon antagonism. In this review, we summarize our current understanding of the structural and functional role of the Z protein in the arenavirus replication cycle.
Keywords: Arenavirus; ESCRT; Lassa virus; Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus; Junin virus; matrix protein; RING finger protein; virus assembly and budding; virus-host cell interaction; Z protein
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Fehling, S.K.; Lennartz, F.; Strecker, T. Multifunctional Nature of the Arenavirus RING Finger Protein Z. Viruses 2012, 4, 2973-3011.
Fehling SK, Lennartz F, Strecker T. Multifunctional Nature of the Arenavirus RING Finger Protein Z. Viruses. 2012; 4(11):2973-3011.
Fehling, Sarah K.; Lennartz, Frank; Strecker, Thomas. 2012. "Multifunctional Nature of the Arenavirus RING Finger Protein Z." Viruses 4, no. 11: 2973-3011.