Functional analysis of interactions between Tat and the trans-activation response element of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 in cells.
Transcriptional trans-activation of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 long terminal repeat requires that the virally encoded Tat effector interacts with its target trans-activation response element (TAR) RNA stem-loop. Although the arginine-rich region of Tat from amino acids 49 to 59 is sufficient to bind to TAR RNA in vitro, the RNA-binding domain of Tat has not been defined in vivo. Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 also encodes the Rev protein, which acts through an RNA stem-loop called the Rev-response element to transport unspliced and singly spliced viral RNA species from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. To map the RNA-binding domain of Tat, we performed assays that relied on Rev function using the heterologous RNA-tethering mechanism of Tat and the TAR. By examining the effects of selected targeted mutations of Tat on the abilities of hybrid Tat/Rev proteins to rescue the expression of unspliced mRNA via the TAR, we demonstrated that residues throughout the N-terminal 59 amino acids of Tat are required for binding of Tat and TAR RNA in vivo.
Luo, Y; Madore, SJ; Parslow, TG; Cullen, BR; Peterlin, BM
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