Moloney murine leukemia virus (MoMLV) Gag utilizes its late (L) domain motif PPPY to bind members of the Nedd4-like ubiquitin ligase family. These interactions recruit components of the cell's budding machinery that are critical for virus release. MoMLV Gag contains two additional L domains, PSAP and LYPAL, that are believed to drive residual MoMLV release via interactions with cellular proteins Tsg101 and Alix, respectively. We found that overexpression of Tsg101 or Alix failed to rescue the release of PPPY-deficient MoMLV via these other L domains. However, low-level expression of the ubiquitin ligase Itch potently rescued the release and infectivity of MoMLV lacking PPPY function. In contrast, other ubiquitin ligases such as WWP1, Nedd4.1, Nedd4.2, and Nedd4.2s did not rescue this release-deficient virus. Efficient rescue required the ubiquitin ligase activity of Itch and an intact C2 domain but not presence of the endophilin-binding site. Additionally, we found Itch to immunoprecipitate with MoMLV Gag lacking the PPPY motif and to be incorporated into rescued MoMLV particles. The PSAP and LYPAL motifs were dispensable for Itch-mediated virus rescue, and their absence did not affect the incorporation of Itch into the rescued particles. Itch-mediated rescue of release-defective MoMLV was sensitive to inhibition by dominant-negative versions of ESCRT-III components and the VPS4 AAA ATPase, indicating that Itch-mediated correction of MoMLV release defects requires the integrity of the host vacuolar sorting protein pathway. RNA interference knockdown of Itch suppressed the residual release of the MoMLV lacking the PPPY motif. Interestingly, Itch stimulation of the PPPY-deficient MoMLV release was accompanied by the enhancement of Gag ubiquitination and the appearance of new ubiquitinated Gag proteins in virions. Together, these results suggest that Itch can facilitate MoMLV release in an L domain-independent manner via a mechanism that requires the host budding machinery and involves Gag ubiquitination.
The membrane scission event that separates nascent enveloped virions from host cell membranes often requires the ESCRT pathway, which can be engaged through the action of peptide motifs, termed late (L-) domains, in viral proteins. Viral PTAP and YPDL-like L-domains bind directly to the ESCRT-I and ALIX components of the ESCRT pathway, while PPxY motifs bind Nedd4-like, HECT-domain containing, ubiquitin ligases (e.g. WWP1). It has been unclear precisely how ubiquitin ligase recruitment ultimately leads to particle release. Here, using a lysine-free viral Gag protein derived from the prototypic foamy virus (PFV), where attachment of ubiquitin to Gag can be controlled, we show that several different HECT domains can replace the WWP1 HECT domain in chimeric ubiquitin ligases and drive budding. Moreover, artificial recruitment of isolated HECT domains to Gag is sufficient to stimulate budding. Conversely, the HECT domain becomes dispensable if the other domains of WWP1 are directly fused to an ESCRT-1 protein. In each case where budding is driven by a HECT domain, its catalytic activity is essential, but Gag ubiquitination is dispensable, suggesting that ubiquitin ligation to trans-acting proteins drives budding. Paradoxically, however, we also demonstrate that direct fusion of a ubiquitin moiety to the C-terminus of PFV Gag can also promote budding, suggesting that ubiquitination of Gag can substitute for ubiquitination of trans-acting proteins. Depletion of Tsg101 and ALIX inhibits budding that is dependent on ubiquitin that is fused to Gag, or ligated to trans-acting proteins through the action of a PPxY motif. These studies underscore the flexibility in the ways that the ESCRT pathway can be engaged, and suggest a model in which the identity of the protein to which ubiquitin is attached is not critical for subsequent recruitment of ubiquitin-binding components of the ESCRT pathway and viral budding to proceed.
The release of an enveloped virus particle from an infected cell requires the separation of the viral and cell membranes. Many enveloped viruses accomplish this by parasitizing a set of cellular proteins, termed the ESCRT pathway, that normally separates cellular membranes from each other. In some cases, viral structural proteins encode peptides motifs that bind directly to, and thereby recruit, the ESCRT machinery. Alternatively, viruses can recruit enzymes, termed ubiquitin ligases, that bind to other proteins, and catalyze the addition of ubiquitin to them. It has, heretofore, been somewhat unclear precisely how the recruitment of ubiquitin ligases leads to the engagement of the ESCRT machinery. We show that the simple recruitment of a fragment of a ubiquitin ligase that is responsible for the addition of ubiquitin to other proteins is sufficient to drive virus particle release, even when it is not possible to attach ubiquitin to viral proteins. Paradoxically, we also found that simple attachment of ubiquitin to the same viral protein can also drive particle release. These results show that there is flexibility in the ways in which the ESCRT machinery can be recruited and how ubiquitin can be co-opted to enable this.
HTLV-1 Gag protein is a matrix protein that contains the PTAP and PPPY sequences as L-domain motifs and which can be released from mammalian cells in the form of virus-like particles (VLPs). The cellular factors Tsg101 and Nedd4.1 interact with PTAP and PPPY, respectively, within the HTLV-1 Gag polyprotein. Tsg101 forms a complex with Vps28 and Vps37 (ESCRT-I complex) and plays an important role in the class E Vps pathway, which mediates protein sorting and invagination of vesicles into multivesicular bodies. Nedd4.1 is an E3 ubiquitin ligase that binds to the PPPY motif through its WW motif, but its function is still unknown. In the present study, to investigate the mechanism of HTLV-1 budding in detail, we analyzed HTLV-1 budding using dominant negative (DN) forms of the class E proteins.
Here, we report that DN forms of Vps4A, Vps4B, and AIP1 inhibit HTLV-1 budding.
These findings suggest that HTLV-1 budding utilizes the MVB pathway and that these class E proteins may be targets for prevention of mother-to-infant vertical transmission of the virus.
In retroviruses, the late (L) domain has been defined as a conserved motif in the Gag polyprotein precursor that, when mutated, leads to the emergence of virus particles that fail to pinch off from the plasma membrane. These domains have been observed to contain the PPXY, PTAP, or YXXL motifs. The deltaretroviruses, which include bovine leukemia virus (BLV) and human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) and HTLV-2, have a conserved PPPY motif in the C-terminal region of the matrix (MA) domain of Gag, while HTLV-1 also encodes a PTAP motif in MA. In this study, we analyzed the roles of the PPPY and PTAP motifs in the C terminus of MA in HTLV-1 particle release. Mutation of either motif (i.e., PPPY changed to APPY or PTAP changed to PTRP) reduced budding efficiencies. Particle buds and electron-dense regions of plasma membrane were observed by electron microscopy. When the locations of PPPY and PTAP were switched, particle release was eliminated. Intriguingly, the replacement of the PTAP motif with either the PPPY or YPDL motifs did not influence the release of virus particles, but the replacement of the PPPY motif with either PTAP or YPDL eliminated particle production. This indicates that the role that PPPY plays in HTLV-1 budding cannot be replaced with either PTAP or YPDL. A similar observation was made with the BLV PPPY motif. Finally, HTLV-1 particle release was found to be sensitive to proteasome inhibitors, implicating a role for ubiquitin in HTLV-1 budding. In summary, our observations indicate that (i) the PPPY motif plays a crucial role in virus budding and (ii) the PTAP motif plays a more subtle role in HTLV-1 particle release. Each of these motifs may play an important role in virus release from specific cell types and therefore be important in efficient virus spread and transmission.
Many enveloped viruses exploit the class E vacuolar protein-sorting (VPS) pathway to bud from cells, and use peptide motifs to recruit specific class E VPS factors. Homologous to E6AP COOH terminus (HECT) ubiquitin ligases have been implicated as cofactors for PPXY motif–dependent budding, but precisely which members of this family are responsible, and how they access the VPS pathway is unclear. Here, we show that PPXY-dependent viral budding is unusually sensitive to inhibitory fragments derived from specific HECT ubiquitin ligases, namely WWP1 and WWP2. We also show that WWP1, WWP2, or Itch ubiquitin ligase recruitment promotes PPXY-dependent virion release, and that this function requires that the HECT ubiquitin ligase domain be catalytically active. Finally, we show that several mammalian HECT ubiquitin ligases, including WWP1, WWP2, and Itch are recruited to class E compartments induced by dominant negative forms of the class E VPS ATPase, VPS4. These data indicate that specific HECT ubiquitin ligases can link PPXY motifs to the VPS pathway to induce viral budding.
Late domains are short peptide sequences encoded by enveloped viruses to promote the final separation of the nascent virus from the infected cell. These amino acid motifs facilitate viral egress by interacting with components of the ESCRT (endosomal sorting complex required for transport) machinery, ultimately leading to membrane scission by recruiting ESCRT-III to the site of viral budding. PPXY late (L) domains present in viruses such as murine leukemia virus (MLV) or human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) access the ESCRT pathway via interaction with HECT ubiquitin ligases (WWP1, WWP2, and Itch). However, the mechanism of ESCRT-III recruitment in this context remains elusive. In this study, we tested the arrestin-related trafficking (ART) proteins, namely, ARRDC1 (arrestin domain-containing protein 1) to ARRDC4 and TXNIP (thioredoxin-interacting protein), for their ability to function as adaptors between HECT ubiquitin ligases and the core ESCRT machinery in PPXY-dependent budding. We present several lines of evidence in support of such a role: ARTs interact with HECT ubiquitin ligases, and they also exhibit multiple interactions with components of the ESCRT pathway, namely, ALIX and Tsg101, and perhaps with an as yet unidentified factor. Additionally, the ARTs can be recruited to the site of viral budding, and their overexpression results in a PPXY-specific inhibition of MLV budding. Lastly, we show that WWP1 changes the ubiquitination status of ARRDC1, suggesting that the ARTs may provide a platform for ubiquitination in PPXY-dependent budding. Taken together, our results support a model whereby ARTs are involved in PPXY-mediated budding by interacting with HECT ubiquitin ligases and providing several alternative routes for ESCRT-III recruitment.
The efficient release of newly assembled retrovirus particles from the plasma membrane requires the recruitment of a network of cellular proteins (ESCRT machinery) normally involved in the biogenesis of multivesicular bodies and in cytokinesis. Retroviruses and other enveloped viruses recruit the ESCRT machinery through three classes of short amino acid consensus sequences termed late domains: PT/SAP, PPXY, and LYPXnL. The major late domain of Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) has been mapped to a PPPY motif in Gag that binds members of the Nedd4 family of ubiquitin ligases. RSV Gag also contains a second putative late domain motif, LYPSL, positioned 5 amino acids downstream of PPPY. LYPXnL motifs have been shown to support budding in other retroviruses by binding the ESCRT adaptor protein Alix. To investigate a possible role of the LYPSL motif in RSV budding, we constructed PPPY and LYPSL mutants in the context of an infectious virus and then analyzed the budding rates, spreading profiles, and budding morphology. The data imply that the LYPSL motif acts as a secondary late domain and that its role in budding is amplified in the absence of a fully functional PPPY motif. The LYPXL motif proved to be a stronger late domain when an aspartic acid was substituted for the native serine, recapitulating the properties of the LYPDL late domain of equine infectious anemia virus. The overexpression of human Alix in the absence of a fully functional PPPY late domain partially rescued both the viral budding rate and viral replication, supporting a model in which the RSV LYPSL motif mediates budding through an interaction with the ESCRT adaptor protein Alix.
Three late assembly domain consensus motifs, namely PTAP, PPPY, and LYPXL, have been identified in different retroviruses. They have been shown to interact with the cellular proteins TSG101, Nedd4, and AP2 or AIP, respectively. Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) has a PPPY and a PTAP motif, separated by two amino acids, located at the end of MA, but only the PPPY motif is conserved in the deltaretrovirus group. Like other retroviral peptides carrying the late motif, MA is mono- or di-ubiquitinated. A mutational analysis showed that 90% of PPPY mutant particles were retained in the cell compared to 15% for the wild-type virus. Mutations of the PTAP motif resulted in a 20% decrease in particle release. In single-cycle infectivity assays, the infectious titers of late motif mutants correlated with the amounts of released virus, as determined by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. We observed binding of MA to the WW domains of the Nedd4 family member WWP1 but not to the amino-terminal ubiquitin E2 variant domain of TSG101 in mammalian two-hybrid analyses. The binding to WWP1 was eliminated when the PPPY motif was mutated. However, MA showed binding to TSG101 in the yeast two-hybrid system that was dependent on an intact PTAP motif. A dominant-negative (DN) mutant of WWP1 could inhibit budding of the intact HTLV-1 virus. In contrast, DN TSG101 only affected the release of virus-like particles encoded by Gag expression plasmids. Electron and fluorescent microscopy showed that Gag accumulates in large patches in the membranes of cells expressing viruses with PPPY mutations. Very few tethered immature particles could be detected in these samples, suggesting that budding is impaired at an earlier step than in other retroviruses.
Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) Gag is targeted to the plasma membrane for particle assembly and release. How HTLV-1 Gag targeting occurs is not well understood. The PPPY and PTAP motifs were previously shown to be involved in HTLV-1 particle release with PTAP playing a more subtle role in virus budding. These L domains function through the interaction with host cellular proteins normally involved in multivesicular body (MVB) morphogenesis. The plasma membrane pathway rather than the MVB pathway was found to be the primary pathway for HTLV-1 particle release in HeLa cells. Intriguingly, disruption of the PTAP motif led to a defect in the targeting of Gag from the plasma membrane to CD63-positive MVBs. Particles or particle buds were observed to be associated with MVBs by electron microscopy, implying that Gag targeting to the MVB resulted in particle budding. Blocking clathrin-dependent endocytosis was found not to influence localization of the HTLV-1 Gag PTAP mutant, indicating that Gag did not reach the MVBs through clathrin-dependent endocytosis. Our observations imply that the interaction between Gag and TSG101 is not required for Gag targeting to the MVB. Overexpression of dynamitin p50 increased particle release, suggesting that there was an increase in the intracellular transport of MVBs to the cell periphery by the utilization of the dynein-dynactin motor complex. Intriguingly, virus particle release with this mutant was reduced by 20-fold compared to that of wild type in HeLa cells, which is in marked contrast to the less-than-twofold defect observed for particle production of the HTLV-1 Gag PTAP mutant from 293T cells. These results indicate that the role of the PTAP motif in L domain function is cell type dependent.
As a key cellular regulatory protein p53 is subject to tight regulation by several E3 ligases. Here we demonstrate the role of HECT domain E3 ligase, WWP1, in regulating p53 localization and activity. WWP1 associates with p53 and induces p53 ubiquitination. Unlike other E3 ligases, WWP1 increases p53 stability; inhibition of WWP1 expression or expression of a ligase-mutant form results in decreased p53 expression. WWP1-mediated stabilization of p53 is associated with increased accumulation of p53 in cytoplasm with a concomitant decrease in its transcriptional activities. WWP1 effects are independent of Mdm2 as they are seen in cells lacking Mdm2 expression. Whereas WWP1 limits p53 activity, p53 reduces expression of WWP1, pointing to a possible feedback loop mechanism. Taken together, these findings identify the first instance of a ubiquitin ligase that causes stabilization of p53 while inactivating its transcriptional activities.
Retroviral Gag polyproteins contain regions that promote the separation of virus particles from the plasma membrane and from each other. These Gag regions are often referred to as late assembly (L) domains. The L domain of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is in the C-terminal p6gag domain and harbors an essential P(T/S)APP motif, whereas the L domains of oncoretroviruses are in the N-terminal half of the Gag precursor and have a PPXY core motif. We recently observed that L domains induce the ubiquitination of a minimal HIV-1 Gag construct and that point mutations which abolish L domain activity prevent Gag ubiquitination. In that study, a peptide from the Ebola virus L domain with overlapping P(T/S)APP and PPXY motifs showed exceptional activity in promoting Gag ubiquitination and the release of virus-like particles. We now show that a substitution which disrupts the PPXY motif but leaves the P(T/S)APP motif intact abolishes L domain activity in the minimal Gag context, but not in the context of a near full-length HIV-1 Gag precursor. Our results reveal that the P(T/S)APP motif does not function autonomously and indicate that the HIV-1 nucleocapsid-p1 region, which is proximal to p6gag, can cooperate with the conserved L domain core motif. We have also examined the effects of ubiquitin mutants on virus-like particle production, and the results indicate that residues required for the endocytosis function of ubiquitin are also involved in virus budding.
The p12 region of the Moloney murine leukemia virus (M-MuLV) Gag protein contains a PPPY motif important for efficient virion assembly and release. To probe the function of the PPPY motif, a series of insertions of homologous and heterologous motifs from other retroviruses were introduced at various positions in a mutant gag gene lacking the PPPY motif. The assembly defects of the PPPY deletion mutant could be rescued by insertion of a wild-type PPPY motif and flanking sequences at several ectopic positions in the Gag protein. The late assembly domain (L-domain) of Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) or human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) could also fully or partially restore M-MuLV assembly when introduced into matrix, p12, or nucleocapsid domains of the mutant M-MuLV Gag protein lacking the PPPY motif. Strikingly, mutant viruses carrying the RSV or the HIV-1 L-domain at the original location of the deleted PPPY motif were replication competent in rodent cells. These data suggest that the PPPY motif of M-MuLV acts in a partially position-independent manner and is functionally interchangeable with L-domains of other retroviruses. Electron microscopy studies revealed that deletion of the entire p12 region resulted in the formation of tube-like rather than spherical particles. Remarkably, the PPPY deletion mutant formed chain structures composed of multiple viral particles linked on the cell surface. Many of the mutants with heterologous L-domains released virions with wild-type morphology.
The human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1) Gag polyprotein contains two adjacent proline-rich motifs (sequence PPPYEPTAP) in the C terminus of the matrix domain. Proline-to-alanine mutations were introduced into either or both motifs of HTLV-1 to determine the effect on the release of HTLV-1 virus-like particles from 293T cells. The release of both single mutants was significantly reduced, whereas a double mutation in both motifs abolished the release of the HTLV-1 particles. Two-hybrid and in vitro binding assays showed that the HTLV-1 Gag polyprotein binds both Tsg101 and Nedd4 proteins. The interaction with HTLV-1 Gag required the central WW domain of Nedd4 and the ubiquitin enzyme variant (UEV) domain of Tsg101. We expressed various fragments of Nedd4 and Tsg101 proteins in 293T cells and tested for their ability to interfere with virion release mediated by the HTLV-1 Gag-Pro polyprotein. Fragments consisting of the N-terminal UEV domain of Tsg101 and the central WW and C-terminal Hect domains of Nedd4 protein all caused transdominant inhibition of HTLV-1 particle release. Similarly, inhibition of the proteasome significantly decreased HTLV-1 particle release. Furthermore, the WW domain overexpression caused an early arrest of HTLV-1 particle morphogenesis before the membrane is deformed into the typical half-shell structure. This result suggests that Nedd4 is involved early in budding of HTLV-1.
Retroviral Gag polyprotein precursors are both necessary and sufficient for the assembly and release of virus-like particles (VLPs) from infected cells. It is well established that small Gag-encoded motifs, known as late domains, promote particle release by interacting with components of the cellular endosomal sorting and ubiquitination machinery. The Gag proteins of a number of different retroviruses are ubiquitinated; however, the role of Gag ubiquitination in particle egress remains undefined. In this study, we investigated this question by using a panel of equine infectious anemia virus (EIAV) Gag derivatives bearing the wild-type EIAV late domain, heterologous retroviral late domains or no late domain. Ubiquitin was fused in cis to the C-termini of these Gag polyproteins, and the effects on VLP budding were measured. Remarkably, fusion of ubiquitin to EIAV Gag lacking a late domain (EIAV/ΔYPDL-Ub) largely rescued VLP release. We also determined the effects of ubiquitin fusion on the sensitivity of particle release to budding inhibitors and to depletion of key endosomal sorting factors. Ubiquitin fusion rendered EIAV/ΔYPDL-Ub sensitive to depletion of cellular endosomal sorting factors Tsg101 and Alix and to overexpression of dominant-negative fragments of Tsg101 and Alix. These findings demonstrate that ubiquitin can functionally compensate for the absence of a retroviral late domain and provide insights into the host-cell machinery engaged by ubiquitin during particle egress.
Alix; assembly and release; EIAV; Gag; retroviruses; Tsg101; ubiquitin
The N terminus of the matrix (M) protein of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and of other rhabdoviruses contains a highly conserved PPPY sequence (or PY motif) similar to the late (L) domains in the Gag proteins of some retroviruses. These L domains in retroviral Gag proteins are required for efficient release of virus particles. In this report, we show that mutations in the PPPY sequence of the VSV M protein reduce virus yield by blocking a late stage in virus budding. We also observed a delay in the ability of mutant viruses to cause inhibition of host gene expression compared to wild-type (WT) VSV. The effect of PY mutations on virus budding appears to be due to a block at a stage just prior to virion release, since electron microscopic examination of PPPA mutant-infected cells showed a large number of assembled virions at the plasma membrane trapped in the process of budding. Deletion of the glycoprotein (G) in addition to these mutations further reduced the virus yield to less than 1% of WT levels, and very few particles were assembled at the cell surface. This observation suggested that G protein aids in the initial stage of budding, presumably during the formation of the bud site. Overall, our results confirm that the PPPY sequence of the VSV M protein possesses L domain activity analogous to that of the retroviral Gag proteins.
Little is known about the mechanisms used by enveloped viruses to separate themselves from the cell surface at the final step of budding. However, small sequences in the Gag proteins of several retroviruses (L domains) have been implicated in this process. A sequence has been identified in the M proteins of rhabdoviruses that closely resembles the PPPPY motif in the L domain of Rous sarcoma virus (RSV), an avian retrovirus. To evaluate whether the PPPY sequence in vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) M protein has an activity analogous to that of the retroviral sequence, M-Gag chimeras were characterized. The N-terminal 74 amino acids of the VSV (Indiana) M protein, including the PPPY motif, was able to replace the L domain of RSV Gag and allow the assembly and release of virus-like particles. Alanine substitutions in the VSV PPPY motif severely compromised the budding activity of this hybrid protein but not that of another chimera which also contained the RSV PPPPY sequence. We conclude that this VSV sequence is functionally homologous to the RSV L domain in promoting virus particle release, making this the first example of such an activity in a virus other than a retrovirus. Both the RSV and VSV motifs have been shown to interact in vitro with certain cellular proteins that contain a WW interaction module, suggesting that the L domains are sites of interaction with unknown host machinery involved in virus release.
Ubiquitination and the degradation of the large subunit of RNA polymerase II, Rpb1, is not only involved in DNA damage-induced arrest but also in other transcription-obstructing events. However, the ubiquitin ligases responsible for DNA damage-independent processes in mammalian cells remain to be identified. Here, we identified Wwp2, a mouse HECT domain ubiquitin E3 ligase, as a novel ubiquitin ligase of Rpb1. We found that Wwp2 specifically interacted with mouse Rpb1 and targeted it for ubiquitination both in vitro and in vivo. Interestingly, the interaction with and ubiquitination of Rpb1 was dependent neither on its phosphorylation state nor on DNA damage. However, the enzymatic activity of Wwp2 was absolutely required for its ubiquitin modification of Rpb1. Furthermore, our study indicates that the interaction between Wwp2 and Rpb1 was mediated through WW domain of Wwp2 and C-terminal domain of Rpb1, respectively. Strikingly, downregulation of Wwp2 expression compromised Rpb1 ubiquitination and elevated its intracellular steady-state protein level significantly. Importantly, we identified six lysine residues in the C-terminal domain of Rpb1 as ubiquitin acceptor sites mediated by Wwp2. These results indicate that Wwp2 plays an important role in regulating expression of Rpb1 in normal physiological conditions.
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) play a pivotal role in the defense against invading pathogens by detecting pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs). TLR4 recognizes lipopolysaccharides (LPS) in the cell walls of Gram-negative bacteria, resulting in the induction and secretion of proinflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α and IL-6. The WW domain containing E3 ubiquitin protein ligase 1 (WWP1) regulates a variety of cellular biological processes. Here, we investigated whether WWP1 acts as an E3 ubiquitin ligase in TLR-mediated inflammation.
Knocking down WWP1 enhanced the TNF-α and IL-6 production induced by LPS, and over-expression of WWP1 inhibited the TNF-α and IL-6 production induced by LPS, but not by TNF-α. WWP1 also inhibited the IκB-α, NF-κB, and MAPK activation stimulated by LPS. Additionally, WWP1 could degrade TRAF6, but not IRAK1, in the proteasome pathway, and knocking down WWP1 reduced the LPS-induced K48-linked, but not K63-linked, polyubiquitination of endogenous TRAF6.
We identified WWP1 as an important negative regulator of TLR4-mediated TNF-α and IL-6 production. We also showed that WWP1 functions as an E3 ligase when cells are stimulated with LPS by binding to TRAF6 and promoting K48-linked polyubiquitination. This results in the proteasomal degradation of TRAF6.
The release of retroviruses from the plasma membrane requires host factors that are believed to be recruited to the site of budding by the late (L) domain of the virus-encoded Gag protein. The L domain of Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) has been shown to interact with a ubiquitin (Ub) ligase, and budding of this virus is dependent on Ub. RSV is similar to other retroviruses in that it contains ∼100 molecules of Ub, but it is unique in that none of these molecules has been found to be conjugated to Gag. If transient ubiquitination of RSV Gag is required for budding, then replacement of the target lysine(s) with arginine should prevent the addition of Ub and reduce budding. Based on known sites of ubiquitination in other viruses, the important lysines would likely reside near the L domain. In RSV, there are five lysines located just upstream of the L domain in a region of the matrix (MA) protein that is dispensable for membrane binding, and replacement of these with arginine (mutant 1-5KR) reduced budding 80 to 90%. The block to budding was found to be on the plasma membrane; however, the few virions that were released had normal size, morphology, and infectivity. Budding was restored when any one of the residues was changed back to lysine or when lysines were inserted in novel positions, either within this region of MA or within the downstream p10 sequence. Moreover, the 1-5KR mutant could be rescued into particles by coexpression of budding-competent Gag molecules. These data argue that the phenotype of mutant 1-5KR is not due to a conformational defect. Consistent with the idea that efficient budding requires a specific role for lysines, human T-cell leukemia virus type 1, which does not bud well compared to RSV and lacks lysines close to its L domain, was found to be released at a higher level upon introduction of lysines near its L domain. This report strongly supports the hypothesis that ubiquitination of the RSV Gag protein (and perhaps those of other retroviruses) is needed for efficient budding.
The HSPs (hereditary spastic paraplegias) are genetic conditions in which there is distal degeneration of the longest axons of the corticospinal tract, resulting in spastic paralysis of the legs. The gene encoding spartin is mutated in Troyer syndrome, an HSP in which paralysis is accompanied by additional clinical features. There has been controversy over the subcellular distribution of spartin. We show here that, at steady state, endogenous spartin exists in a cytosolic pool that can be recruited to endosomes and to lipid droplets. Cytosolic endogenous spartin is mono-ubiquitinated and we demonstrate that it interacts via a PPXY motif with the ubiquitin E3 ligases AIP4 [atrophin-interacting protein 4; WWP2 (WW domain-containing E3 ubiquitin protein ligase 2] and AIP5 (WWP1). Surprisingly, the PPXY motif, AIP4 and AIP5 are not required for spartin's ubiquitination, and so we propose that spartin acts as an adaptor for these proteins. Our results suggest that spartin is involved in diverse cellular functions, which may be of relevance to the complex phenotype seen in Troyer syndrome.
epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR); hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP); microtubule interacting and trafficking domain; mono-ubiquitination; spartin; AIP, atrophin-interacting protein; DMEM, Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium; EGF, epidermal growth factor; EGFR, EGF receptor; GFP, green fluorescent protein; HA, haemagglutinin; HECT, homologous with the E6AP C-terminus; GST, glutathione transferase; HSP, hereditary spastic paraplegia; LAMP1, lysosome-associated membrane protein 1; Nedd4.2, neural-precursor-cell-expressed developmentally down-regulated; siRNA, small interfering RNA; α-spartin, polyclonal antibody against spartin; spartinAAAA, mutation of spartin's PPXY motif to AAAA; Vps4, vacuolar protein sorting 4; WWP, WW domain-containing E3 ubiquitin protein ligase
The matrix (M) proteins of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and rabies virus (RV) play a key role in both assembly and budding of progeny virions. A PPPY motif (PY motif or late-budding domain) is conserved in the M proteins of VSV and RV. These PY motifs are important for virus budding and for mediating interactions with specific cellular proteins containing WW domains. The PY motif and flanking sequences of the M protein of VSV were used as bait to screen a mouse embryo cDNA library for cellular interactors. The mouse Nedd4 protein, a membrane-localized ubiquitin ligase containing multiple WW domains, was identified from this screen. Ubiquitin ligase Rsp5, the yeast homolog of Nedd4, was able to interact both physically and functionally with full-length VSV M protein in a PY-dependent manner. Indeed, the VSV M protein was multiubiquitinated by Rsp5 in an in vitro ubiquitination assay. To demonstrate further that ubiquitin may be involved in the budding process of rhabdoviruses, proteasome inhibitors (e.g., MG132) were used to decrease the level of free ubiquitin in VSV- and RV-infected cells. Viral titers measured from MG132-treated cells were reproducibly 10- to 20-fold lower than those measured from untreated control cells, suggesting that free ubiquitin is important for efficient virus budding. Last, release of a VSV PY mutant was not inhibited in the presence of MG132, signifying that the functional L domain of VSV is required for the inhibitory effect exhibited by MG132. These data suggest that the cellular ubiquitin-proteasome machinery is involved in the budding process of VSV and RV.
The membrane cytoskeleton linker ezrin participates in several functions downstream of the receptor Met in response to Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) stimulation. Here we report a novel interaction of ezrin with a HECT E3 ubiquitin ligase, WWP1/Aip5/Tiul1, a potential oncogene that undergoes genomic amplification and overexpression in human breast and prostate cancers. We show that ezrin binds to the WW domains of WWP1 via the consensus motif PPVY477 present in ezrin’s C-terminus. This association results in the ubiquitylation of ezrin, a process that requires an intact PPVY477 motif. Interestingly ezrin ubiquitylation does not target the protein for degradation by the proteasome. We find that ezrin ubiquitylation by WWP1 in epithelial cells leads to the upregulation of Met level in absence of HGF stimulation and increases the response of Met to HGF stimulation as measured by the ability of the cells to heal a wound. Interestingly this effect requires ubiquitylated ezrin since it can be rescued, after depletion of endogenous ezrin, by wild type ezrin but not by a mutant of ezrin that cannot be ubiquitylated. Taken together our data reveal a new role for ezrin in Met receptor stability and activity through its association with the E3 ubiquitin ligase WWP1. Given the role of Met in cell proliferation and tumorigenesis, our results may provide a mechanistic basis for understanding the role of ezrin in tumor progression.
The release of retroviruses from cells requires ubiquitination of Gag and recruitment of cellular proteins involved in endosome sorting, including the ESCRT-III proteins and the Vps4 ATPase. In response to infection, cells have evolved an interferon-induced mechanism to block virus replication through expression of the interferon-stimulated gene 15 (ISG15), a dimer homologue of ubiquitin, which interferes with ubiquitin pathways in cells. Previously, it has been reported that ISG15 expression inhibited the E3 ubiquitin ligase, Nedd4, and prevented association of the ESCRT-I protein Tsg101 with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) Gag. The budding of avian sarcoma leukosis virus and HIV-1 Gag virus-like particles containing L-domain mutations can be rescued by fusion to ESCRT proteins, which cause entry into the budding pathway beyond these early steps. The release of these fusions from cells was susceptible to inhibition by ISG15, indicating that there was a block late in the budding process. We now demonstrate that the Vps4 protein does not associate with the avian sarcoma leukosis virus or the HIV-1 budding complexes when ISG15 is expressed. This is caused by a loss in interaction between Vps4 with its coactivator protein LIP5 needed to promote the formation of the ESCRT-III-Vps4 double-hexamer complex required for membrane scission and virus release. The inability of LIP5 to interact with Vps4 is the probable result of ISG15 conjugation to the ESCRT-III protein, CHMP5, which regulates the availability of LIP5. Thus, there appear to be multiple levels of ISG15-induced inhibition acting at different stages of the virus release process.
Dietary Restriction (DR) extends longevity in diverse species suggesting that there is a conserved mechanism for nutrient regulation and prosurvival responses1. We have discovered a role for the HECT E3 ubiquitin ligase WWP-1 as a positive regulator of lifespan in C. elegans in response to diet restriction. We find that overexpression of wwp-1 in worms extends lifespan up to 20% under conditions of ad libitum feeding. This extension is dependent upon the FoxA transcription factor pha-4, and independent of the FoxO transcription factor, daf-16. Reduction of wwp-1 completely suppresses the extended longevity of diet-restricted animals. However, loss of wwp-1 does not affect the long lifespan of animals with compromised mitochondrial function or reduced insulin/IGF-1 signaling. Overexpression of a mutant form of WWP-1 lacking catalytic activity suppresses the increased lifespan of diet-restricted animals, indicating that WWP-1 ubiquitin ligase activity is essential for longevity. Additionally, we find that the E2 ubiquitin conjugating enzyme, UBC-18, is essential and specific for DR induced longevity. UBC-18 interacts with WWP-1 and is required for the ubiquitin ligase activity of WWP-1 and the extended longevity of worms overexpressing wwp-1. Taken together, our results indicate that WWP-1 and UBC-18 function to ubiquitinate substrates that regulate DR induced longevity.
To exit infected cells, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) exploits the vacuolar protein-sorting pathway by engaging Tsg101 and ALIX through PTAP and LYPxnL late assembly (L) domains. In contrast, less-complex retroviruses often use PPxY L domains to recruit Nedd4 family ubiquitin ligases. Although HIV-1 Gag lacks PPxY motifs, we now show that the budding of various HIV-1 L-domain mutants is dramatically enhanced by ectopic Nedd4-2s, a native isoform with a truncated C2 domain. The effect of Nedd4-2s on HIV-1 budding required a catalytically active HECT domain and was specific, since other Nedd4 family proteins showed little activity and an unrelated retrovirus was not rescued. The residual C2 domain of Nedd4-2s was critical for the enhancement of HIV-1 budding and for the association of Nedd4-2s with Gag, as reflected by its incorporation into virus-like particles. Interestingly, the incorporation of Nedd4-2s also depended on its active site, indicating that the ability to form a thioester with ubiquitin was required. These data suggest a novel mechanism by which HIV-1 Gag can connect to cellular budding machinery.