Abstract: The role of enzymes involved in polycomb repression of gene transcription has been studied extensively in human cancer. Polycomb repressive complexes mediate oncogene-induced senescence, a principal innate cell-intrinsic tumor suppressor pathway that thwarts expansion of cells that have suffered oncogenic hits. Infections with human cancer viruses including human papillomaviruses (HPVs) and Epstein-Barr virus can trigger oncogene-induced senescence, and the viruses have evolved strategies to abrogate this response in order to establish an infection and reprogram their host cells to establish a long-term persistent infection. As a consequence of inhibiting polycomb repression and evading oncogene induced-senescence, HPV infected cells have an altered epigenetic program as evidenced by aberrant homeobox gene expression. Similar alterations are frequently observed in non-virus associated human cancers and may be harnessed for diagnosis and therapy.
Abstract: The Hepatitis C virus causes chronic infections in humans, which can develop to liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The Bovine viral diarrhea virus is used as a surrogate model for antiviral assays for the HCV. From marine invertebrates and microorganisms isolated from them, extracts were prepared for assessment of their possible antiviral activity. Of the 128 tested, 2 were considered active and 1 was considered promising. The best result was obtained from the extracts produced from the Bacillus sp. isolated from the sponge Petromica citrina. The extracts 555 (500 µg/mL, SI>18) and 584 (150 µg/mL, SI 27) showed a percentage of protection of 98% against BVDV, and the extract 616, 90% of protection. All of them showed activity during the viral adsorption. Thus, various substances are active on these studied organisms and may lead to the development of drugs which ensure an alternative therapy for the treatment of hepatitis C.
Abstract: REST is a key component of the HDAC1 or 2, CoREST, LSD1, REST (HCLR) repressor complex. The primary function of the HCLR complex is to silence neuronal genes in non-neuronal cells. HCLR plays a role in regulating the expression of viral genes in productive infections as a donor of LDS1 for expression of α genes and as a repressor of genes expressed later in infection. In sensory neurons the HCLR complex is involved in the silencing of viral genome in the course of establishment of latency. The thesis of this article is that (a) sensory neurons evolved a mechanism to respond to the presence and suppress the transmission of infectious agents from the periphery to the CNS and (b) HSV evolved subservience to the HCLR with at least two objectives: to maintain a level of replication consistent with maximal person-to-person spread and to enable it to take advantage of neuronal innate immune responses to survive and be available for reactivation shielded from adaptive immune responses of the host.
Abstract: Small ruminant lentiviruses (SRLV) cause a multisystemic chronic disease affecting animal production and welfare. SRLV infections are spread across the world with the exception of Iceland. Success in controlling SRLV spread depends largely on the use of appropriate diagnostic tools, but the existence of a high genetic/antigenic variability among these viruses, the fluctuant levels of antibody against them and the low viral loads found in infected individuals hamper the diagnostic efficacy. SRLV have a marked in vivo tropism towards the monocyte/macrophage lineage and attempts have been made to identify the genome regions involved in tropism, with two main candidates, the LTR and env gene, since LTR contains primer binding sites for viral replication and the env-encoded protein (SU ENV), which mediates the binding of the virus to the host’s cell and has hypervariable regions to escape the humoral immune response. Once inside the host cell, innate immunity may interfere with SRLV replication, but the virus develops counteraction mechanisms to escape, multiply and survive, creating a quasi-species and undergoing compartmentalization events. So far, the mechanisms of organ tropism involved in the development of different disease forms (neurological, arthritic, pulmonary and mammary) are unknown, but different alternatives are proposed. This is an overview of the current state of knowledge on SRLV genetic variability and its implications in tropism as well as in the development of alternative diagnostic assays.
Abstract: Starting in late November 2010, the H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus was isolated from many types of wild ducks and raptors and was subsequently isolated from poultry in Korea. We assessed the genetic and pathogenic properties of the HPAI viruses isolated from a fecal sample from a mandarin duck and a dead Eurasian eagle owl, the most affected wild bird species during the 2010/2011 HPAI outbreak in Korea. These viruses have similar genetic backgrounds and exhibited the highest genetic similarity with recent Eurasian clade 220.127.116.11 HPAI viruses. In animal inoculation experiments, regardless of their originating hosts, the two Korean isolates produced highly pathogenic characteristics in chickens, ducks and mice without pre-adaptation. These results raise concerns about veterinary and public health. Surveillance of wild birds could provide a good early warning signal for possible HPAI infection in poultry as well as in humans.
Abstract: Human Immunodeficiency Virus type 1 (HIV-1) is a retrovirus that causes acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). HIV-1 Tat protein upregulates transcriptional transactivation. The nucleocapsid protein NC of HIV-1 is a component of virion and plays a key role in genome packaging. Herein, we have demonstrated the interaction between NC and Tat by means of a yeast two-hybrid assay, GST pull-down analysis, co-immunoprecipitation and subcellular colocalization analysis. We observed that the level of Tat was significantly reduced in the presence of NC. But NC did not affect mRNA expression level of Tat. The level of Tat in the presence of NC was increased by treating cells with a proteasome inhibitor, MG132. The ubiquitination state of Tat was not seen to increase in the presence of NC, suggesting the proteasomal degradation was independent of ubiquitination. Lowered level of Tat in the presence of NC led to a decrease in Tat-mediated transcriptional transactivation.