The amino terminus of herpes simplex virus 1 glycoprotein K (gK) is required for gB binding to Akt, release of intracellular calcium, and fusion of the viral envelope with plasma membranes

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© 2018 American Society for Microbiology. Previously, we have shown that the amino terminus of glycoprotein K (gK) binds to the amino terminus of gB and that deletion of the aminoterminal 38 amino acids of gK prevents herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) infection of mouse trigeminal ganglia after ocular infection and virus entry into neuronal axons. Recently, it has been shown that gB binds to Akt during virus entry and induces Akt phosphorylation and intracellular calcium release. Proximity ligation and two-way immunoprecipitation assays using monoclonal antibodies against gB and Akt-1 phosphorylated at S473 [Akt-1(S473)] confirmed that HSV-1(McKrae) gB interacted with Akt-1(S473) during virus entry into human neuroblastoma (SKN- SH) cells and induced the release of intracellular calcium. In contrast, the gB specified by HSV-1(McKrae) gKΔ31-68, lacking the amino-terminal 38 amino acids of gK, failed to interact with Akt-1(S473) and induce intracellular calcium release. The Akt inhibitor miltefosine inhibited the entry of McKrae but not the gKΔ31-68 mutant into SK-N-SH cells. Importantly, the entry of the gKΔ31-68 mutant but not McKrae into SK-N-SH cells treated with the endocytosis inhibitors pitstop-2 and dynasore hydrate was significantly inhibited, indicating that McKrae gKΔ31-68 entered via endocytosis. These results suggest that the amino terminus of gK functions to regulate the fusion of the viral envelope with cellular plasma membranes.

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Journal of Virology

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