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Y-box-binding protein 1 interacts with hepatitis C virus NS3/4A and influences the equilibrium between viral RNA replication and infectious particle production.

Chatel-Chaix L, Melançon P, Racine MÈ, Baril M, Lamarre D

Institut de Recherche en Immunologie et en Cancérologie, Université de Montréal, C.P. 6128, Succursale Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec H3C 3J7, Canada.

The hepatitis C virus (HCV) NS3/4A protein has several essential roles in the virus life cycle, most probably through dynamic interactions with host factors. To discover cellular cofactors that are co-opted by HCV for its replication, we elucidated the NS3/4A interactome using mass spectrometry and identified Y-box-binding protein 1 (YB-1) as an interacting partner of NS3/4A protein and HCV genomic RNA. Importantly, silencing YB-1 expression decreased viral RNA replication and severely impaired the propagation of the infectious HCV molecular clone JFH-1. Immunofluorescence studies further revealed a drastic HCV-dependent redistribution of YB-1 to the surface of the lipid droplets, an important organelle for HCV assembly. Core and NS3 protein-dependent polyprotein maturation were shown to be required for YB-1 relocalization. Unexpectedly, YB-1 knockdown cells showed the increased production of viral infectious particles while HCV RNA replication was impaired. Our data support that HCV hijacks YB-1-containing ribonucleoparticles and that YB-1-NS3/4A-HCV RNA complexes regulate the equilibrium between HCV RNA replication and viral particle production.

J. Virol. 2011;85(21):11022-37.

Pubmed ID: 21849455

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