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Title: Dephosphorylation of West Nile virus capsid protein enhances the processes of nucleocapsid assembly
Authors: Cheong, Y.K.
Ng, M.-L. 
Keywords: Assembly
Issue Date: Jan-2011
Citation: Cheong, Y.K., Ng, M.-L. (2011-01). Dephosphorylation of West Nile virus capsid protein enhances the processes of nucleocapsid assembly. Microbes and Infection 13 (1) : 76-84. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: West Nile virus (WNV) capsid (C) protein is one of the three viral structural proteins and it encapsidates the viral RNA to form the nucleocapsid. It is known to be a multifunctional protein involved in assembly and apoptosis. WNV C protein was previously found to be phosphorylated in infected cells and bioinformatic analysis revealed 5 putative phosphorylation sites at serine 26, 36, 83, 99 and threonine 100. Phosphorylation was abolished through mutagenesis of these putative phosphorylation sites to investigate how phosphorylation could affect the processes of nucleocapsid assembly like RNA binding, oligomerization and cellular localization. It was found that phosphorylation attenuated its RNA binding activity. Although oligomerization was not inhibited by mutagenesis of the putative phosphorylation sites, the rate of dimerization and oligomerization was affected. Hypophosphorylation of C protein reduced its nuclear localization efficiency and hence enhanced cytoplasmic localization. This study also revealed that although WNV C is phosphorylated in infected cells, the relative level of phosphorylation is reduced over the course of an infection to promote RNA binding and nucleocapsid formation in the cytoplasm. This is the first report to describe how dynamic phosphorylation of WNV C protein modulates the processes involved in nucleocapsid assembly. © 2010 Institut Pasteur.
Source Title: Microbes and Infection
ISSN: 12864579
DOI: 10.1016/j.micinf.2010.10.014
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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