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Influenza A Virus NS1 Protein Binds as a Dimer to RNA-Free PABP1 but Not to the PABP1·Poly(A) RNA Complex

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journal contribution
posted on 11.11.2020, 03:03 by Cyrus M. de Rozières, Simpson Joseph
Influenza A virus (IAV) is a highly contagious human pathogen that is responsible for tens of thousands of deaths each year. Non-structural protein 1 (NS1) is a crucial protein expressed by IAV to evade the host immune system. Additionally, NS1 has been proposed to stimulate translation because of its ability to bind poly­(A) binding protein 1 (PABP1) and eukaryotic initiation factor 4G. We analyzed the interaction of NS1 with PABP1 using quantitative techniques. Our studies show that NS1 binds as a homodimer to PABP1, and this interaction is conserved across different IAV strains. Unexpectedly, NS1 does not bind to PABP1 that is bound to poly­(A) RNA. Instead, NS1 binds only to PABP1 free of RNA, suggesting that stimulation of translation does not occur by NS1 interacting with the PABP1 molecule attached to the mRNA 3′-poly­(A) tail. These results suggest that the function of the NS1·PABP1 complex appears to be distinct from the classical role of PABP1 in translation initiation, when it is bound to the 3′-poly­(A) tail of mRNA.

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