Structural insights into the stabilization of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 capsid protein by the cyclophilin-binding domain and implications on the virus cycle

Academic Article


  • During infection, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) interacts with the cellular host factor cyclophilin A (CypA) through residues 85-93 of the N-terminal domain of HIV-1's capsid protein (CA). The role of the CA:CypA interaction is still unclear. Previous studies showed that a CypA-binding loop mutant, Δ87-97, has increased ability to assemble in vitro. We used this mutant to infer whether the CypA-binding region has an overall effect on CA stability, as measured by pressure and chemical perturbation. We built a SAXS-based envelope model for the dimer of both WT and Δ87-97. A new conformational arrangement of the dimers is described, showing the structural plasticity that CA can adopt. In protein folding studies, the deletion of the loop drastically reduces CA stability, as assayed by high hydrostatic pressure and urea. We hypothesize that the deletion promotes a rearrangement of helix 4, which may enhance the heterotypic interaction between the N- and C-terminal domains of CA dimers. In addition, we propose that the cyclophilin-binding loop may modulate capsid assembly during infection, either in the cytoplasm or near the nucleus by binding to the nuclear protein Nup385.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cortines JR; Lima LMTR; Mohana-Borges R; De Millen TA; Gaspar LP; Lanman JK; Prevelige PE; Silva JL
  • Start Page

  • 341
  • End Page

  • 348
  • Volume

  • 1854
  • Issue

  • 5