Author(s): Kitagawa Y, Zhou M, Yamaguchi M, Komatsu T, Takeuchi K,
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Abstract M2-2 protein of human metapneumovirus (HMPV) is encoded by one of two overlapping open reading frames within M2 mRNA. The precise function of HMPV M2-2 protein remains unknown. We here examined effect of M2-2 protein on HMPV transcription and replication using a minigenome construct and monitoring luciferase reporter gene expression. The minigenome assays demonstrated that M2-2 protein inhibited both transcription and RNA replication. The inhibitory function of M2-2 protein was completely abrogated by removal of eight or four amino acids from its N- or C-terminus, respectively, demonstrating importance of both short terminal sequences for maintaining its functional structure. Immunoprecipitation experiments revealed interaction of M2-2 protein with L protein, which might be involved in inhibition of HMPV transcription and replication. Prior accumulation of intracellular M2-2 protein severely restrained HMPV from replicating. Thus inherent viral control of the M2-2 gene expression in infected cells seems to be essential for efficient HMPV replication. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Microbes Infect
and referenced in Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals