Research ArticleVIROLOGY

Regulation of measles virus gene expression by P protein coiled-coil properties

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science Advances  08 May 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 5, eaaw3702
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aaw3702

Abstract

The polymerase of negative-stranded RNA viruses consists of the large protein (L) and the phosphoprotein (P), the latter serving both as a chaperon and a cofactor for L. We mapped within measles virus (MeV) P the regions responsible for binding and stabilizing L and showed that the coiled-coil multimerization domain (MD) of P is required for gene expression. MeV MD is kinked as a result of the presence of a stammer. Both restoration of the heptad regularity and displacement of the stammer strongly decrease or abrogate activity in a minigenome assay. By contrast, P activity is rather tolerant of substitutions within the stammer. Single substitutions at the “a” or “d” hydrophobic anchor positions with residues of variable hydrophobicity revealed that P functionality requires a narrow range of cohesiveness of its MD. Results collectively indicate that, beyond merely ensuring P oligomerization, the MD finely tunes viral gene expression through its cohesiveness.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial license, which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, so long as the resultant use is not for commercial advantage and provided the original work is properly cited.

View Full Text