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A conserved uORF impacts APOBEC3G translation and is essential for translational inhibition by the HIV-1 Vif protein

Abstract : ABSTRACT The HIV-1 Vif protein is essential for viral fitness and pathogenicity. Vif decreases expression of cellular cytosine deaminases APOBEC3G (A3G), A3F, A3D and A3H, which inhibit HIV-1 replication by inducing hypermutations during reverse transcription. Vif counteracts A3G by several non-redundant mechanisms (transcription, translation and protein degradation) that concur in reducing the levels of A3G in cell and in preventing its incorporation into viral particles. How Vif affects A3G translation remains unclear. Here, we uncovered the importance of a short conserved uORF (upstream ORF) located within two critical stem-loop structures of the 5′ untranslated region (5′UTR) of A3G mRNA. Extensive mutagenesis of A3G 5′-UTR, combined with an analysis of their translational effect in transfected cells, indicated that the uORF represses A3G translation and that A3G mRNA is translated through a dual leaky-scanning and re-initiation mechanism. Interestingly, the uORF is also mandatory for the Vif-mediated repression of A3G translation. Furthermore, we showed that the redirection of A3G mRNA into stress granules was dependent not only on Vif, but also on the uORF. Overall, we discovered that A3G translation is regulated by a small uORF conserved in the human population and that Vif uses this specific motif to repress its translation.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03369138
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Submitted on : Thursday, October 7, 2021 - 10:31:56 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, October 19, 2021 - 4:00:45 PM

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Camille Libre, Tanja Seissler, Santiago Guerrero, Julien Batisse, Cédric Verriez, et al.. A conserved uORF impacts APOBEC3G translation and is essential for translational inhibition by the HIV-1 Vif protein. 2021. ⟨hal-03369138⟩

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