Structural and functional analysis of interhelical interactions in the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 gp41 envelope glycoprotein by alanine-scanning mutagenesis.Lu, M., Stoller, M.O., Wang, S., Liu, J., Fagan, M.B., Nunberg, J.H.
(2001) J.Virol. 75: 11146-11156
- PubMed: 11602754
- DOI: 10.1128/JVI.75.22.11146-11156.2001
- Primary Citation of Related Structures:  1I5Y
- PubMed Abstract:
Membrane fusion by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is promoted by the refolding of the viral envelope glycoprotein into a fusion-active conformation. The structure of the gp41 ectodomain core in its fusion-active state is a trimer of hair ...
Membrane fusion by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is promoted by the refolding of the viral envelope glycoprotein into a fusion-active conformation. The structure of the gp41 ectodomain core in its fusion-active state is a trimer of hairpins in which three antiparallel carboxyl-terminal helices pack into hydrophobic grooves on the surface of an amino-terminal trimeric coiled coil. In an effort to identify amino acid residues in these grooves that are critical for gp41 activation, we have used alanine-scanning mutagenesis to investigate the importance of individual side chains in determining the biophysical properties of the gp41 core and the membrane fusion activity of the gp120-gp41 complex. Alanine substitutions at Leu-556, Leu-565, Val-570, Gly-572, and Arg-579 positions severely impaired membrane fusion activity in envelope glycoproteins that were for the most part normally expressed. Whereas alanine mutations at Leu-565 and Val-570 destabilized the trimer-of-hairpins structure, mutations at Gly-572 and Arg-579 led to the formation of a stable gp41 core. Our results suggest that the Leu-565 and Val-570 residues are important determinants of conserved packing interactions between the amino- and carboxyl-terminal helices of gp41. We propose that the high degree of sequence conservation at Gly-572 and Arg-579 may result from selective pressures imposed by prefusogenic conformations of the HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein. Further analysis of the gp41 activation process may elucidate targets for antiviral intervention.
Department of Biochemistry, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York 10021, USA. email@example.com