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

Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) viral protein R (Vpr) interacts with Lys-tRNA synthetase: implications for priming of HIV-1 reverse transcription.

The vpr gene of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) encodes a 96-amino-acid 14-kDa protein (viral protein R [Vpr]), which is produced late in the viral life cycle and is incorporated into the virion. Although Vpr is not required for viral replication in transformed cell lines and primary T lymphocytes, it is essential for productive infection of macrophages and monocytes and appears to be important for pathogenesis in vivo. To establish the role of Vpr in HIV-1 replication and pathogenesis, we have isolated cellular proteins with which Vpr interacts. By using the yeast two-hybrid system, Lys-tRNA synthetase (LysRS) was identified as a Vpr-interacting protein. The interaction between Vpr and LysRS was characterized both in vitro and in vivo, and the domains of Vpr required for the interaction were defined. In the presence of Vpr, LysRS-mediated amino-acylation of tRNA(Lys) is inhibited. Since tRNA(Lys) is the primer for reverse transcription of the HIV-1 genome, this suggests that the interaction between Vpr and LysRS may influence the initiation of HIV-1 reverse transcription.[1]


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