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Viruses 2012, 4(9), 1651-1667; doi:10.3390/v4091651
Review

Uncovering Viral Protein-Protein Interactions and their Role in Arenavirus Life Cycle

1
, 1
, 2
 and 1,*
1 Centro de Virología Animal (CEVAN), Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnología Dr. Cesar Milstein, Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONICET), Saladillo 2468, Buenos Aires C1440FFX, Argentina 2 Department of Microbiology, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave L. Levy Place, New York, NY 10029, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 August 2012 / Revised: 4 September 2012 / Accepted: 10 September 2012 / Published: 20 September 2012
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Abstract

The Arenaviridae family includes widely distributed pathogens that cause severe hemorrhagic fever in humans. Replication and packaging of their single-stranded RNA genome involve RNA recognition by viral proteins and a number of key protein-protein interactions. Viral RNA synthesis is directed by the virus-encoded RNA dependent-RNA polymerase (L protein) and requires viral RNA encapsidation by the Nucleoprotein. In addition to the role that the interaction between L and the Nucleoprotein may have in the replication process, polymerase activity appears to be modulated by the association between L and the small multifunctional Z protein. Z is also a structural component of the virions that plays an essential role in viral morphogenesis. Indeed, interaction of the Z protein with the Nucleoprotein is critical for genome packaging. Furthermore, current evidence suggests that binding between Z and the viral envelope glycoprotein complex is required for virion infectivity, and that Z homo-oligomerization is an essential step for particle assembly and budding. Efforts to understand the molecular basis of arenavirus life cycle have revealed important details on these viral protein-protein interactions that will be reviewed in this article.
Keywords: Tacaribe virus; protein-protein interaction; viral RNA synthesis, virus assembly Tacaribe virus; protein-protein interaction; viral RNA synthesis, virus assembly
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Loureiro, M.E.; D’Antuono, A.; Levingston Macleod, J.M.; López, N. Uncovering Viral Protein-Protein Interactions and their Role in Arenavirus Life Cycle. Viruses 2012, 4, 1651-1667.

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