Human cytomegalovirus carries a cell-derived phospholipase A2 required for infectivity

Cuider Allal, Claire Buisson-Brenac, Vincent Marion, Clotilde Claudel-Renard, Thomas Faraut, Paola Dal Monte, Daniel Streblow, Michel Record, Jean Luc Davignon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is known to carry host cell-derived proteins and mRNAs whose role in cell infection is not understood. We have identified a phospholipase A2 (PLA2) activity borne by HCMV by using an assay based on the hydrolysis of fluorescent phosphatidylcholine. This activity was found in all virus strains analyzed and in purified strains. It was calcium dependent and was sensitive to inhibitors of cytosolic PLA2 (cPLA2) but not to inhibitors of soluble PLA2 or calcium-independent PLA2. No other phospholipase activity was detected in the virus. Purified virus was found to contain human cellular cPLA2α, as detected by monoclonal antibody. No homology with PLA2 was found in the genome of HCMV, indicating that HCMV does not code for a PLA2. Decreased de novo expression of immediate-early proteins 1 and 2 (IE1 and IE2), tegument phosphoprotein pp65, and virus production was observed when HCMV was treated with inhibitors of cPLA2. Cell entry of HCMV was not altered by those inhibitors, suggesting the action of cPLA2 was postentry. Together, our results indicate a selective sorting of a cell-derived cPLA2 during HCMV maturation, which is further required for infectivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7717-7726
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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