1887

Abstract

Parvoviruses are small DNA viruses that replicate in the nucleus of their host cells. It has been largely assumed that parvoviruses enter the nucleus through the nuclear pore complex (NPC). However, the details of this mechanism remain undefined. To study this problem, the parvovirus (MVM) was microinjected into the cytoplasm of oocytes and a transmission electron microscope was used to visualize the effect of the virus on the host cell. It was found that MVM caused damage to the nuclear envelope (NE) in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Damage was predominantly to the outer nuclear membrane and was often near the NPCs. However, microinjection experiments in which the NPCs were blocked showed that NE damage induced by MVM was independent of the NPC. To address the question of whether this effect of MVM is specific to the NE, purified organelles were incubated with MVM. Visualization by electron microscopy revealed that MVM did not affect all intracellular membranes. These data represent a novel form of virus-induced damage to host cell nuclear structure and suggest that MVM is imported into the nucleus using a unique mechanism that is independent of the NPC, and involves disruption of the NE and import through the resulting breaks.

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2005-12-01
2019-11-21
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