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Biological Chemistry

Editor-in-Chief: Brüne, Bernhard

Editorial Board: Buchner, Johannes / Lei, Ming / Ludwig, Stephan / Thomas, Douglas D. / Turk, Boris / Wittinghofer, Alfred

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 3.014
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 3.162

CiteScore 2018: 3.09

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 1.482
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.820

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Volume 380, Issue 3


Chaperones Involved in Hepatitis B Virus Morphogenesis

R. Prange / M. Werr / H. Löffler-Mary
Published Online: 2005-06-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.1999.042


Little is known about host cell factors necessary for hepatitis B virus (HBV) assembly which involves envelopment of cytosolic nucleocapsids by the S, M and L transmembrane viral envelope proteins and subsequent budding into intraluminal cisternae. Central to virogenesis is the L protein that mediates hepatocyte receptor binding and envelopment of capsids. To serve these topologically conflicting roles, L protein exhibits an unusual dual membrane topology, disposing its N-terminal preS domain inside and outside of the virion lipid envelope. The mixed topology is achieved by posttranslational preS translocation of about half of the L protein molecules across a post-endoplasmic reticulum membrane. Here we identify and characterize a preS-specific sequence that confers the suppression of cotranslational translocation even of a model reporter. This cytosolic anchorage sequence specifically binds the cognate heat shock protein Hsc70, thus indicating chaperone participitation in HBV morphogenesis. Conversely, the M envelope protein needs the assistance of the chaperone calnexin for proper folding and trafficking. Calnexin selectively binds to the N-glycan, specific for M, rather than to the N-glycan, common to all three envelope proteins. As inhibition of the calnexin-M interaction blocks the secretion of viral envelopes, we propose an essential role for calnexin, as well as for Hsc70, in chaperoning HBV assemby.

About the article

Published Online: 2005-06-01

Published in Print: 1999-03-01

Citation Information: Biological Chemistry, Volume 380, Issue 3, Pages 305–314, ISSN (Print) 1431-6730, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.1999.042.

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