HIV-1 must replicate in cells that are equipped to defend themselves from infection through intracellular innate immune systems. HIV-1 evades innate immune sensing through encapsidated DNA synthesis and encodes accessory genes that antagonize specific antiviral effectors. Here we show that both particle associated, and expressed HIV-1 Vpr, antagonize the stimulatory effect of a variety of pathogen associated molecular patterns by inhibiting IRF3 and NF-κB nuclear transport. Phosphorylation of IRF3 at S396, but not S386, was also inhibited. We propose that, rather than promoting HIV-1 nuclear import, Vpr interacts with karyopherins to disturb their import of IRF3 and NF-κB to promote replication in macrophages. Concordantly, we demonstrate Vpr dependent rescue of HIV-1 replication in human macrophages from inhibition by cGAMP, the product of activated cGAS. We propose a model that unifies Vpr manipulation of nuclear import and inhibition of innate immune activation to promote HIV-1 replication and transmission.
All data generated or analysed during this study are included in the manuscript and supporting files.
- Greg J Towers
- Greg J Towers
- Hataf Khan
- Chris Van Tulleken
- Greg J Towers
- Greg J Towers
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Human subjects: This study was approved by the UCL/UCLH Committees on the Ethics of Human Research, Committee Alpha reference (06/Q0502/92). All participants provided written informed consent and consent for publication.
- John W Schoggins, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, United States
© 2020, Towers et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
CRISPR-Cas systems are a family of adaptive immune systems that use small CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) and CRISPR-associated (Cas) nucleases to protect prokaryotes from invading plasmids and viruses (i.e. phages). Type III systems launch a multi-layered immune response that relies upon both Cas and non-Cas cellular nucleases, and although the functions of Cas components have been well described, the identities and roles of non-Cas participants remain poorly understood. Previously, we showed that the Type III-A CRISPR-Cas system in Staphylococcus epidermidis employs two degradosome-associated nucleases, PNPase and RNase J2, to promote crRNA maturation and eliminate invading nucleic acids (Chou-Zheng and Hatoum-Aslan, 2019). Here, we identify RNase R as a third 'housekeeping' nuclease critical for immunity. We show that RNase R works in concert with PNPase to complete crRNA maturation, and identify specific interactions with Csm5, a member of the Type III effector complex, which facilitate nuclease recruitment/stimulation. Further, we demonstrate that RNase R and PNPase are required to maintain robust anti-plasmid immunity, particularly when targeted transcripts are sparse. Altogether, our findings expand the known repertoire of accessory nucleases required for Type III immunity and highlight the remarkable capacity of these systems to interface with diverse cellular pathways to ensure successful defense.
In their natural environment, most bacteria preferentially live as complex surface-attached multicellular colonies called biofilms. Biofilms begin with a few cells adhering to a surface, where they multiply to form a mature colony. When conditions deteriorate, cells can leave the biofilm. This dispersion is thought to be an important process that modifies the overall biofilm architecture and that promotes colonization of new environments. In Caulobacter crescentus biofilms, extracellular DNA (eDNA) is released upon cell death and prevents newborn cells from joining the established biofilm. Thus, eDNA promotes the dispersal of newborn cells and the subsequent colonization of new environments. These observations suggest that eDNA is a cue for sensing detrimental environmental conditions in the biofilm. Here we show that the toxin-antitoxin system (TAS) ParDE4 stimulates cell death in areas of a biofilm with decreased O2 availability. In conditions where O2 availability is low, eDNA concentration is correlated with cell death. Cell dispersal away from biofilms is decreased when parDE4 is deleted, probably due to the lower local eDNA concentration. Expression of parDE4 is positively regulated by O2 and the expression of this operon is decreased in biofilms where O2 availability is low. Thus, a programmed cell death mechanism using an O2-regulated TAS stimulates dispersal away from areas of a biofilm with decreased O2 availability and favors colonization of a new, more hospitable environment.