Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a prototypic member of the betaherpesvirus family. The HCMV virion is composed of a large DNA genome encapsidated within a nucleocapsid, which is wrapped within an inner proteinaceous tegument and an outer lipid envelope containing viral glycoproteins. Although genome encapsidation clearly occurs in the nucleus, the subsequent steps in the virion assembly process are unclear. HCMV glycoprotein B (gB) is a major component of the virion envelope that plays a critical role in virus entry and is essential for the production of infectious virus progeny. The aim of our present study was to identify the secretory compartment to which HCMV gB was localized and to investigate the role of endocytosis in mediating gB localization and HCMV biogenesis. We show that HCMV gB is localized to the trans-Golgi network (TGN) in HCMV-infected cells and that gB contains all of the trafficking information necessary for TGN localization. Endocytosis of gB was shown to play a role in mediating TGN localization of gB and in targeting of the protein to the site of virus envelopment. However, inhibition of endocytosis with a dominant-negative dynamin I molecule did not affect the production of infectious virus. These observations indicate that, although endocytosis is involved in the trafficking of gB to the site of glycoprotein accumulation in the TGN, endocytosis of gB is not required for the production of infectious HCMV.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science