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Abstract

GB virus type C (GBV-C) is a lymphotropic virus that can cause persistent infection in humans. GBV-C is not associated with any disease, but is associated with reduced mortality in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected individuals. Related viruses have been isolated from chimpanzees (GBV-Ccpz) and from New World primates (GB virus type A, GBV-A). These viruses are also capable of establishing persistent infection. We determined the nucleotide sequence encoding the envelope glycoprotein (E2) of two GBV-Ccpz isolates obtained from the sera of captive chimpanzees. The deduced GBV-Ccpz E2 protein differed from human GBV-C by 31 % at the amino acid level. Similar to human GBV-C E2, expression of GBV-Ccpz E2 in a tet-off human CD4 Jurkat T-cell line significantly inhibited the replication of diverse HIV-1 isolates. This anti-HIV-replication effect of GBV-Ccpz E2 protein was reversed by maintaining cells in doxycycline to reduce E2 expression. Previously, we found a 17 aa region within human GBV-C E2 that was sufficient to inhibit HIV-1. Although GBV-Ccpz E2 differed by 3 aa differences in this region, the chimpanzee GBV-C 17mer E2 peptide inhibited HIV-1 replication. Similarly, the GBV-A peptide that aligns with this GBV-C E2 region inhibited HIV-1 replication despite sharing only 5 aa with the human GBV-C E2 sequence. Thus, despite amino acid differences, the peptide region on both the GBV-Ccpz and the GBV-A E2 protein inhibit HIV-1 replication similar to human GBV-C. Consequently, GBV-Ccpz or GBV-A infection of non-human primates may provide an animal model to study GB virus–HIV interactions.

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2013-04-01
2020-07-07
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