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Title: Crystal Structure of the Marburg Virus VP35 Oligomerization Domain

Abstract

ABSTRACT Marburg virus (MARV) is a highly pathogenic filovirus that is classified in a genus distinct from that of Ebola virus (EBOV) (generaMarburgvirusandEbolavirus, respectively). Both viruses produce a multifunctional protein termed VP35, which acts as a polymerase cofactor, a viral protein chaperone, and an antagonist of the innate immune response. VP35 contains a central oligomerization domain with a predicted coiled-coil motif. This domain has been shown to be essential for RNA polymerase function. Here we present crystal structures of the MARV VP35 oligomerization domain. These structures and accompanying biophysical characterization suggest that MARV VP35 is a trimer. In contrast, EBOV VP35 is likely a tetramer in solution. Differences in the oligomeric state of this protein may explain mechanistic differences in replication and immune evasion observed for MARV and EBOV. IMPORTANCEMarburg virus can cause severe disease, with up to 90% human lethality. Its genome is concise, only producing seven proteins. One of the proteins, VP35, is essential for replication of the viral genome and for evasion of host immune responses. VP35 oligomerizes (self-assembles) in order to function, yet the structure by which it assembles has not been visualized. Here we present two crystal structures of this oligomerization domain. In both structures,more » three copies of VP35 twist about each other to form a coiled coil. This trimeric assembly is in contrast to tetrameric predictions for VP35 of Ebola virus and to known structures of homologous proteins in the measles, mumps, and Nipah viruses. Distinct oligomeric states of the Marburg and Ebola virus VP35 proteins may explain differences between them in polymerase function and immune evasion. These findings may provide a more accurate understanding of the mechanisms governing VP35's functions and inform the design of therapeutics.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States). Advanced Photon Source (APS)
Sponsoring Org.:
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
OSTI Identifier:
1340720
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Virology; Journal Volume: 91; Journal Issue: 2
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
ENGLISH

Citation Formats

Bruhn, Jessica F., Kirchdoerfer, Robert N., Urata, Sarah M., Li, Sheng, Tickle, Ian J., Bricogne, Gérard, Saphire, Erica Ollmann, and Sundquist, W. I. Crystal Structure of the Marburg Virus VP35 Oligomerization Domain. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1128/JVI.01085-16.
Bruhn, Jessica F., Kirchdoerfer, Robert N., Urata, Sarah M., Li, Sheng, Tickle, Ian J., Bricogne, Gérard, Saphire, Erica Ollmann, & Sundquist, W. I. Crystal Structure of the Marburg Virus VP35 Oligomerization Domain. United States. doi:10.1128/JVI.01085-16.
Bruhn, Jessica F., Kirchdoerfer, Robert N., Urata, Sarah M., Li, Sheng, Tickle, Ian J., Bricogne, Gérard, Saphire, Erica Ollmann, and Sundquist, W. I. 2016. "Crystal Structure of the Marburg Virus VP35 Oligomerization Domain". United States. doi:10.1128/JVI.01085-16.
@article{osti_1340720,
title = {Crystal Structure of the Marburg Virus VP35 Oligomerization Domain},
author = {Bruhn, Jessica F. and Kirchdoerfer, Robert N. and Urata, Sarah M. and Li, Sheng and Tickle, Ian J. and Bricogne, Gérard and Saphire, Erica Ollmann and Sundquist, W. I.},
abstractNote = {ABSTRACT Marburg virus (MARV) is a highly pathogenic filovirus that is classified in a genus distinct from that of Ebola virus (EBOV) (generaMarburgvirusandEbolavirus, respectively). Both viruses produce a multifunctional protein termed VP35, which acts as a polymerase cofactor, a viral protein chaperone, and an antagonist of the innate immune response. VP35 contains a central oligomerization domain with a predicted coiled-coil motif. This domain has been shown to be essential for RNA polymerase function. Here we present crystal structures of the MARV VP35 oligomerization domain. These structures and accompanying biophysical characterization suggest that MARV VP35 is a trimer. In contrast, EBOV VP35 is likely a tetramer in solution. Differences in the oligomeric state of this protein may explain mechanistic differences in replication and immune evasion observed for MARV and EBOV. IMPORTANCEMarburg virus can cause severe disease, with up to 90% human lethality. Its genome is concise, only producing seven proteins. One of the proteins, VP35, is essential for replication of the viral genome and for evasion of host immune responses. VP35 oligomerizes (self-assembles) in order to function, yet the structure by which it assembles has not been visualized. Here we present two crystal structures of this oligomerization domain. In both structures, three copies of VP35 twist about each other to form a coiled coil. This trimeric assembly is in contrast to tetrameric predictions for VP35 of Ebola virus and to known structures of homologous proteins in the measles, mumps, and Nipah viruses. Distinct oligomeric states of the Marburg and Ebola virus VP35 proteins may explain differences between them in polymerase function and immune evasion. These findings may provide a more accurate understanding of the mechanisms governing VP35's functions and inform the design of therapeutics.},
doi = {10.1128/JVI.01085-16},
journal = {Journal of Virology},
number = 2,
volume = 91,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month =
}
  • Filoviruses, marburgvirus (MARV) and ebolavirus (EBOV), are causative agents of highly lethal hemorrhagic fever in humans. MARV and EBOV share a common genome organization but show important differences in replication complex formation, cell entry, host tropism, transcriptional regulation, and immune evasion. Multifunctional filoviral viral protein (VP) 35 proteins inhibit innate immune responses. Recent studies suggest double-stranded (ds)RNA sequestration is a potential mechanism that allows EBOV VP35 to antagonize retinoic-acid inducible gene-I (RIG-I) like receptors (RLRs) that are activated by viral pathogen–associated molecular patterns (PAMPs), such as double-strandedness and dsRNA blunt ends. Here, we show that MARV VP35 can inhibit IFNmore » production at multiple steps in the signaling pathways downstream of RLRs. The crystal structure of MARV VP35 IID in complex with 18-bp dsRNA reveals that despite the similar protein fold as EBOV VP35 IID, MARV VP35 IID interacts with the dsRNA backbone and not with blunt ends. Functional studies show that MARV VP35 can inhibit dsRNA-dependent RLR activation and interferon (IFN) regulatory factor 3 (IRF3) phosphorylation by IFN kinases TRAF family member-associated NFkb activator (TANK) binding kinase-1 (TBK-1) and IFN kB kinase e (IKKe) in cell-based studies. We also show that MARV VP35 can only inhibit RIG-I and melanoma differentiation associated gene 5 (MDA5) activation by double strandedness of RNA PAMPs (coating backbone) but is unable to inhibit activation of RLRs by dsRNA blunt ends (end capping). In contrast, EBOV VP35 can inhibit activation by both PAMPs. Insights on differential PAMP recognition and inhibition of IFN induction by a similar filoviral VP35 fold, as shown here, reveal the structural and functional plasticity of a highly conserved virulence factor.« less
  • Suppression of innate immune responses during filoviral infection contributes to disease severity. Ebola (EBOV) and Marburg (MARV) viruses each encode a VP35 protein that suppresses RIG-I-like receptor signaling and interferon-α/β (IFN-α/β) production by several mechanisms, including direct binding to double stranded RNA (dsRNA). Here, we demonstrate that in cell culture, MARV infection results in a greater upregulation of IFN responses as compared to EBOV infection. This correlates with differences in the efficiencies by which EBOV and MARV VP35s antagonize RIG-I signaling. Furthermore, structural and biochemical studies suggest that differential recognition of RNA elements by the respective VP35 C-terminal IFN inhibitorymore » domain (IID) rather than affinity for RNA by the respective VP35s is critical for this observation. Our studies reveal functional differences in EBOV versus MARV VP35 RNA binding that result in unexpected differences in the host response to deadly viral pathogens.« less
  • APOBEC3G is a DNA cytidine deaminase that has antiviral activity against HIV-1 and other pathogenic viruses. In this study the crystal structure of the catalytically active C-terminal domain was determined to 2.25 {angstrom}. This structure corroborates features previously observed in nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) studies, a bulge in the second {beta} strand and a lengthening of the second {alpha} helix. Oligomerization is postulated to be critical for the function of APOBEC3G. In this structure, four extensive intermolecular interfaces are observed, suggesting potential models for APOBEC3G oligomerization. The structural and functional significance of these interfaces was probed by solution NMR andmore » disruptive variants were designed and tested for DNA deaminase and anti-HIV activities. The variant designed to disrupt the most extensive interface lost both activities. NMR solution data provides evidence that another interface, which coordinates a novel zinc site, also exists. Thus, the observed crystallographic interfaces of APOBEC3G may be important for both oligomerization and function.« less
  • Ebolaviruses are causative agents of lethal hemorrhagic fever in humans and nonhuman primates. Among the filoviruses characterized thus far, Reston Ebola virus (REBOV) is the only Ebola virus that is nonpathogenic to humans despite the fact that REBOV can cause lethal disease in nonhuman primates. Previous studies also suggest that REBOV is less effective at inhibiting host innate immune responses than Zaire Ebola virus (ZEBOV) or Marburg virus. Virally encoded VP35 protein is critical for immune suppression, but an understanding of the relative contributions of VP35 proteins from REBOV and other filoviruses is currently lacking. In order to address thismore » question, we characterized the REBOV VP35 interferon inhibitory domain (IID) using structural, biochemical, and virological studies. These studies reveal differences in double-stranded RNA binding and interferon inhibition between the two species. These observed differences are likely due to increased stability and loss of flexibility in REBOV VP35 IID, as demonstrated by thermal shift stability assays. Consistent with this finding, the 1.71-{angstrom} crystal structure of REBOV VP35 IID reveals that it is highly similar to that of ZEBOV VP35 IID, with an overall backbone r.m.s.d. of 0.64 {angstrom}, but contains an additional helical element at the linker between the two subdomains of VP35 IID. Mutations near the linker, including swapping sequences between REBOV and ZEBOV, reveal that the linker sequence has limited tolerance for variability. Together with the previously solved ligand-free and double-stranded-RNA-bound forms of ZEBOV VP35 IID structures, our current studies on REBOV VP35 IID reinforce the importance of VP35 in immune suppression. Functional differences observed between REBOV and ZEBOV VP35 proteins may contribute to observed differences in pathogenicity, but these are unlikely to be the major determinant. However, the high level of similarity in structure and the low tolerance for sequence variability, coupled with the multiple critical roles played by Ebola virus VP35 proteins, highlight the viability of VP35 as a potential target for therapeutic development.« less