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Abstract

The interferon-induced murine Mx1 GTPase is a nuclear protein. It specifically inhibits influenza A viruses at the step of primary transcription, a process known to occur in the nucleus of infected cells. However, the exact mechanism of inhibition is still poorly understood. The Mx1 GTPase has previously been shown to accumulate in distinct nuclear dots that are spatially associated with promyelocytic leukaemia protein (PML) nuclear bodies (NBs), but the significance of this association is not known. Here it is reported that, in cells lacking PML and, as a consequence, PML NBs, Mx1 still formed nuclear dots. These dots were indistinguishable from the dots observed in wild-type cells, indicating that intact PML NBs are not required for Mx1 dot formation. Furthermore, Mx1 retained its antiviral activity against influenza A virus in these PML-deficient cells, which were fully permissive for influenza A virus. Nuclear Mx proteins from other species showed a similar subnuclear distribution. This was also the case for the human MxA GTPase when this otherwise cytoplasmic protein was translocated into the nucleus by virtue of a foreign nuclear localization signal. Human MxA and mouse Mx1 do not interact or form heterooligomers. Yet, they co-localized to a large degree when co-expressed in the nucleus. Taken together, these findings suggest that Mx1 dots represent distinct nuclear domains (‘Mx nuclear domains’) that are frequently associated with, but functionally independent of, PML NBs.

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2004-08-01
2019-11-12
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vol. , part 8, pp. 2315 - 2326

HeLa cells were transfected with plasmid pHMG-Mx1(C71S) (generated from pHMG-Mx1 using PCR), fixed 1 day later and immunolabeled with monoclonal anti-Mx antibody M143. (A) Cell displaying mainly fine-granular Mx1(C71S) with a few bigger dots. (B) Cell with dot-like Mx1(C71S) accumulations. Bar, 10 µm. [PDF](137 KB)



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