Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists 'See' How HIV Matures Into An Infection

Date:
October 3, 2008
Source:
University of Missouri-Columbia
Summary:
After improving the sensitivity of nuclear magnetic resonance, researchers actually watched the HIV-1 protease mature from an inactive form into an active infection. This process has never been directly visualized before.

After improving the sensitivity of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), researchers at the University of Missouri actually watched the HIV-1 protease mature from an inactive form into an active infection. This process has never been directly visualized before. The findings appear in the journal Nature.

Related Articles


"We actually saw the process occur," said Chun Tang, assistant professor of biochemistry in the MU School of Medicine. "This is something that has never been done before. We now understand more about the maturation process. We hope this will be a stepping stone to intervening before the infection progresses."

The HIV-1 protease is responsible for releasing the essential building blocks of an infective HIV-1 viral particle, the culprit of AIDS. The HIV-1 protease is one of the primary targets of therapeutic treatment. However, the viral enzyme is constantly mutating in an effort to gain drug resistance.

"HIV-1 protease is not an active enzyme when it is first expressed in cells. It has to be activated to do its job," Tang said. "What we were able to see is how it self-activates from an immature form when the virus is not infective into a mature form when the virus gains infectivity."

Tang and his colleagues used a novel NMR method called paramagnetic resonance relaxation enhancement and were able to see the temporary joining of two halves of HIV-1 protease precursor, something that had not been accessible before using conventional techniques.

The researchers discovered that the 'tail,' or the flanking amino acid residues, of the HIV-1 protease precursor go through a temporarily formed tunnel where the tail is cut off. At this point, the protease becomes active, the maturation process proceeds, and the virus becomes infective.

"The more we understand about the virus, especially about the maturation into infection, the more we can do to identify novel therapeutics," Tang said.

The study, "Visualizing transient events in amino-terminal autoprocessing of HIV-1 protease," was published in the journal Nature.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Missouri-Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Missouri-Columbia. "Scientists 'See' How HIV Matures Into An Infection." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081001145028.htm>.
University of Missouri-Columbia. (2008, October 3). Scientists 'See' How HIV Matures Into An Infection. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081001145028.htm
University of Missouri-Columbia. "Scientists 'See' How HIV Matures Into An Infection." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081001145028.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins