Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.310, No.1, 54-58, 2003
Nuclear localization of nucleocapsid-like particles and HCV core protein in hepatocytes of a chronically HCV-infected patient
Little is known about the life cycle of hepatitis C virus. Determination of the subcellular localization of HCV proteins may contribute to our understanding of the in vivo functions of the viral proteins. HCV core protein regulates multiple functions in host cells and it has been detected both in the cytoplasm and in the nucleus using different expression systems. In this study, nucleocapsid-like particles were observed in the nucleus of hepatocytes from a chronically HCV-infected patient. They were similar in size and shape to those of HCV core-like particles purified from recombinant Pichia pastoris cells. In addition the HCV core protein was detected not only in the cytoplasm but also in the nucleus and nucleolus of hepatocytes by immunoelectron microscopy. This is the first report showing nuclear localization of HCV core protein and nucleocapsid-like particles in hepatocytes during in vivo HCV infection. (C) 2003 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.