Program in Molecular Medicine
BACKGROUND: SIVMAC/HIV-2 Vpx recruits the CUL4A-DCAF1 E3 ubiquitin ligase complex to degrade the deoxynucleotide hydrolase SAMHD1. This increases the concentration of deoxynucleotides available for reverse transcription in myeloid cells and resting T cells. Accordingly, transduction of these cells by SIVMAC requires Vpx. Virus-like particles containing SIVMAC Vpx (Vpx-VLPs) also increase the efficiency of HIV-1 transduction in these cells, and rescue transduction by HIV-1, but not SIVMAC, in mature monocyte-derived dendritic cells (MDDCs). Differences in Vpx mechanism noted at that time, along with recent data suggesting that SAMHD1 gains additional restriction capabilities in the presence of type I IFN prompted further examination of the role of Vpx and SAMHD1 in HIV-1 transduction of mature MDDCs.
RESULTS: When challenged with Vpx-VLPs, SAMHD1 was degraded in MDDCs even after cells had been matured with LPS, though there was no increase in deoxynucleotide levels. Steady-state levels of HIV-1 late reverse transcription products in mature MDDCs were increased to the same extent by either Vpx-VLPs or exogenous nucleosides. In contrast, only Vpx-VLPs increased the levels of 2-LTR circles and proviral DNA in myeloid cells. These results demonstrate that exogenous nucleosides and Vpx-VLPs both increase the levels of HIV-1 cDNA in myeloid cells, but only Vpx-VLPs rescue 2-LTR circles and proviral DNA in myeloid cells with a previously established antiviral state. Finally, since trans-acting Vpx-VLPs provide long-lasting rescue of HIV-1 vector transduction in the face of the antiviral state, and exogenous nucleosides do not, exogenous nucleosides were used to achieve efficient transduction of MDDCs by vectors that stably encode Vprs and Vpxs from a collection of primate lentiviruses. Vpr from SIVDEB or SIVMUS, Vpx from SIVMAC251 or HIV-2, but not SIVRCM, degraded endogenous SAMHD1, increased steady-state levels of HIV-1 cDNA, and rescued HIV-1 from the antiviral state in MDDCs.
CONCLUSION: Inhibition of deoxynucleotide hydrolysis by promoting SAMHD1 degradation is not the only mechanism by which Vpx rescues HIV-1 in MDDCs from the antiviral state. Vpx has an additional effect on HIV-1 transduction of these cells that occurs after completion of reverse transcription and acts independently of deoxynucleotide levels.
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Citation: Reinhard C, Bottinelli D, Kim B, Luban J. Vpx rescue of HIV-1 from the antiviral state in mature dendritic cells is independent of the intracellular deoxynucleotide concentration. Retrovirology. 2014 Feb 1;11:12. doi:10.1186/1742-4690-11-12. Link to article on publisher's website
HIV-1, Vpx, SIV, Dendritic cell, SAMHD1, Interferon, Reverse transcription, Integration