Virology. 2018 Oct 2;525:161-169. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2018.09.016. [Epub ahead of print]
The avian influenza virus PA segment mediates strain-specific antagonism of BST-2/tetherin.

Narkpuk J1, Jongkaewwattana A1, Teeravechyan S2.
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BST-2 is an antiviral protein described as a powerful cross-species transmission barrier for simian immunodeficiency viruses. Influenza viruses appear to interact with BST-2, raising the possibility that BST-2 may be a barrier for cross-species transmission. An MDCK-based cell line expressing human BST-2 was generated to study human-derived A/Puerto Rico/8/36 (H1N1; PR8) as well as two low pathogenic avian influenza viruses (subtypes H4N6 and H6N1). The H4N6 and H6N1 viruses were less affected by BST-2 expression than PR8, due to their ability to decrease BST-2 levels, a function localized to the PA segment of both avian viruses. Experiments with PA-mutant and -chimeric viruses confirmed that the avian PA segment conferred BST-2 downregulation and antagonism. These results indicate a species-specific ability of PA from low pathogenic avian viruses to mitigate human BST-2 antiviral activity, suggesting that BST-2 is unlikely to be a general cross-species barrier to transmission of such viruses to humans.


Avian influenza; BST-2; Influenza virus; NS1; PA; PA-X; Tetherin

PMID: 30290311 DOI: 10.1016/j.virol.2018.09.016