Hepatitis C virus budding at lipid droplet-associated ER membrane visualized by 3D electron microscopy
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- Roingeard, P., Hourioux, C., Blanchard, E. et al. Histochem Cell Biol (2008) 130: 561. doi:10.1007/s00418-008-0447-2
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The mechanisms underlying hepatitis C virus (HCV) morphogenesis remain elusive, but lipid droplets have recently been shown to be important organelles for virus production. We investigated the interaction between HCV-like particles and lipid droplets by three-dimensional reconstructions of serial ultrathin electron microscopy sections of cells producing the HCV core protein. The budding of HCV-like particles was mostly initiated at membranes close to the lipid droplets rather than at membranes directly apposed to the lipid droplets. This may have important implications for our understanding of the complex relationship between HCV and lipids and may make easier to dissect out the HCV life cycle.