Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.459, No.2, 214-219, 2015
HIV-1 Vpr suppresses the cytomegalovirus promoter in a CRL4(DCAF1) E3 ligase independent manner
Although the Vpr protein of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) has been shown to act as a transcriptional activator of the HIV-1 LTR and certain host genes, the current study demonstrates that it can also function as a potent inhibitor of the cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter. Previous studies have shown that the cell cycle arrest and apoptotic functions of Vpr required recruitment of the CRL4(DCAF1) E3 ligase, but this complex is shown not to be required for inhibition of the CMV promoter. We identified conserved sites (A30/V31) from diverse Vpr from HIV/SIV that were critical for blocking the CMV promoter activity. Interestingly, the Vpr mutant A30S/V31S protein also impaired the ability of Vpr to down-regulate transcription of the host UNG2 gene. Our findings shed light on the dual functions of Vpr on the transcription of HIV-1, other viruses and host genes which may contribute to viral replication and disease progression in vivo. (C) 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.