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The missing link in coronavirus assembly. Retention of the avian coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus envelope protein in the pre-Golgi compartments and physical interaction between the envelope and membrane proteins



The missing link in coronavirus assembly. Retention of the avian coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus envelope protein in the pre-Golgi compartments and physical interaction between the envelope and membrane proteins



Journal of Biological Chemistry 276(20): 17515-17523



One missing link in the coronavirus assembly is the physical interaction between two crucial structural proteins, the membrane (M) and envelope (E) proteins. In this study, we demonstrate that the coronavirus infectious bronchitis virus E can physically interact, via a putative peripheral domain, with M. Deletion of this domain resulted in a drastic reduction in the incorporation of M into virus-like particles. Immunofluorescent staining of cells coexpressing M and E supports that E interacts with M and relocates M to the same subcellular compartments that E resides in. E was retained in the pre-Golgi membranes, prior to being translocated to the Golgi apparatus and the secretory vesicles; M was observed to exhibit similar localization and translocation profiles as E when coexpressed with E. Deletion studies identified the C-terminal 6-residue RDKLYS as the endoplasmic reticulum retention signal of E, and site-directed mutagenesis of the -4 lysine residue to glutamine resulted in the accumulation of E in the Golgi apparatus. The third domain of E that plays a crucial role in virus budding is a putative transmembrane domain present at the N-terminal region, because deletion of the domain resulted in a free distribution of the mutant protein and in dysfunctional viral assembly.

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Accession: 011525762

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PMID: 11278557

DOI: 10.1074/jbc.m009731200


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