The heads of the measles virus attachment protein move to transmit the fusion-triggering signal

Chanakha K. Navaratnarajah, Numan Oezguen, Levi Rupp, Leah Kay, Vincent H J Leonard, Werner Braun, Roberto Cattaneo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

77 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The measles virus entry system, consisting of attachment (hemagglutinin, H) and fusion proteins, operates by means of a variety of natural and targeted receptors; however, the mechanism that triggers fusion of the viral envelope with the plasma membrane is not understood. Here, we tested a model proposing that the two heads of an H dimer, which are covalently linked at their base, after binding two receptor molecules, move relative to each other to transmit the fusion-triggering signal. Indeed, stabilizing the H-dimer interface with additional intermolecular disulfide bonds prevented membrane fusion, an effect that was reversed by a reducing agent. Moreover, a membrane-anchored designated receptor efficiently triggered fusion, provided that it engaged the H dimer at locations proximal to where the natural receptors bind and distal to the H-dimer interface. We discuss how receptors may force H-protein heads to switch partners and transmit the fusion-triggering signal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-135
Number of pages8
JournalNature Structural and Molecular Biology
Volume18
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2011

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Virus Attachment
Measles virus
Head
Virus Internalization
Membrane Fusion
Reducing Agents
Hemagglutinins
Disulfides
Proteins
Cell Membrane
Membranes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology

Cite this

The heads of the measles virus attachment protein move to transmit the fusion-triggering signal. / Navaratnarajah, Chanakha K.; Oezguen, Numan; Rupp, Levi; Kay, Leah; Leonard, Vincent H J; Braun, Werner; Cattaneo, Roberto.

In: Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, Vol. 18, No. 2, 02.2011, p. 128-135.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Navaratnarajah, Chanakha K. ; Oezguen, Numan ; Rupp, Levi ; Kay, Leah ; Leonard, Vincent H J ; Braun, Werner ; Cattaneo, Roberto. / The heads of the measles virus attachment protein move to transmit the fusion-triggering signal. In: Nature Structural and Molecular Biology. 2011 ; Vol. 18, No. 2. pp. 128-135.
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