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Title: Protein Kinase R Degradation Is Essential for Rift Valley Fever Virus Infection and Is Regulated by SKP1-CUL1-F-box (SCF)FBXW11-NSs E3 Ligase

Activated protein kinase R (PKR) plays a vital role in antiviral defense primarily by inhibiting protein synthesis and augmenting interferon responses. Many viral proteins have adopted unique strategies to counteract the deleterious effects of PKR. The NSs (Non-structural s) protein which is encoded by Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) promotes early PKR proteasomal degradation through a previously undefined mechanism. In this study, we demonstrate that NSs carries out this activity by assembling the SCF (SKP1-CUL1-F-box)FBXW11 E3 ligase. NSs binds to the F-box protein, FBXW11, via the six amino acid sequence DDGFVE called the degron sequence and recruits PKR through an alternate binding site to the SCFFBXW11 E3 ligase. We further show that disrupting the assembly of the SCFFBXW11-NSs E3 ligase with MLN4924 (a small molecule inhibitor of SCF E3 ligase activity) or NSs degron viral mutants or siRNA knockdown of FBXW11 can block PKR degradation. Surprisingly, under these conditions when PKR degradation was blocked, NSs was essential and sufficient to activate PKR causing potent inhibition of RVFV infection by suppressing viral protein synthesis. These antiviral effects were antagonized by the loss of PKR expression or with a NSs deleted mutant virus. Therefore, early PKR activation by disassembly of SCFFBXW11-NSs E3more » ligase is sufficient to inhibit RVFV infection. Furthermore, FBXW11 and BTRC are the two homologues of the βTrCP (Beta-transducin repeat containing protein) gene that were previously described to be functionally redundant. However, in RVFV infection, among the two homologues of βTrCP, FBXW11 plays a dominant role in PKR degradation and is the limiting factor in the assembly of the SCFFBXW11 complex. Thus, FBXW11 serves as a master regulator of RVFV infection by promoting PKR degradation. Overall these findings provide new insights into NSs regulation of PKR activity and offer potential opportunities for therapeutic intervention of RVFV infection.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. United States Army Medical Research Inst. of Infectious Diseases, Frederick, MD (United States)
  2. Perkin Elmer, Waltham, MA (United States); United States Army Medical Research Inst. of Infectious Diseases, Frederick, MD (United States)
Publication Date:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
PLoS Pathogens
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 12; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 1553-7374
Public Library of Science
Research Org:
United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, Frederick, Maryland (United States); Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), Joint Science and Technology Office for Chem Bio Defense (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier: