Maturation inhibitors facilitate virus assembly and release of HIV-1 capsid P224 mutant

Publication date: August 2018
Source:Virology, Volume 521
Author(s): Uddhav Timilsina, Dibya Ghimire, Laxmi Prasad Adhikari, Abhi Bhattarai, Nawneet Mishra, Madhu Rai, Ravi Chandra Dubey, Ritu Gaur
HIV-1 Maturation inhibitors (MIs) bind to the C-terminal domain of capsid protein (CA-CTD) and spacer peptide 1 (SP1) in HIV-1 Gag and inhibit the CA-SP1 cleavage by stabilizing the immature Gag. The β-turn motif, GVGGP in the HIV CA-CTD (residues 220–224) is one of the key determinants of HIV Gag assembly. In the present study, we mutated each residue of HIV-1 β-turn motif to alanine and observed complete inhibition of virus release of all mutants. This defect in virus release was rescued in the presence of maturation inhibitors; BVM and PF-46396 for P224A mutant. To our knowledge, this is the first report of identification of BVM and PF-46396-dependent capsid mutant. Our results highlight the importance of the core β-turn motif residues in immature virus assembly and suggest that the presence of MIs enhances Gag membrane binding and multimerization thereby restoring virus release of HIV Gag P224 mutant.