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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

In vitro characterization of the interaction between HIV-1 Gag and human lysyl-tRNA synthetase.

Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) viral assembly is mediated by multiple protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interactions. Human tRNA(Lys3) is used as the primer for HIV reverse transcription, and HIV Gag and GagPol are required for packaging of the tRNA into virions. Human lysyl-tRNA synthetase (LysRS) is also specifically packaged into HIV, suggesting a role for LysRS in tRNA packaging. Gag alone is sufficient for packaging of LysRS, and these two proteins have been shown to interact in vitro using glutathione S-transferase pull-down assays. In vitro pull-down assays using truncated constructs have also revealed that residues important for homodimerization of Gag and LysRS are critical for the Gag/LysRS interaction. In this work, we report further in vitro characterization of the interaction between HIV Gag and human LysRS using affinity pull-down assays, fluorescence anisotropy measurements and gel chromatography. An equilibrium binding constant of 310 +/- 80 nM was measured for the Gag/LysRS interaction. We also show that capsid alone binds to LysRS with a similar affinity as full-length Gag. Point mutations that disrupt the homodimerization of LysRS and Gag in vitro do not affect their interaction. These results suggest that dimerization of each protein per se is not required for the interaction but that residues involved in forming the homodimer interfaces contribute to heterodimer formation. Gel chromatography studies further support the formation of a Gag/LysRS heterodimer.[1]


  1. In vitro characterization of the interaction between HIV-1 Gag and human lysyl-tRNA synthetase. Kovaleski, B.J., Kennedy, R., Hong, M.K., Datta, S.A., Kleiman, L., Rein, A., Musier-Forsyth, K. J. Biol. Chem. (2006) [Pubmed]
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