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Identification and functional analysis of the putative anti-apoptotic gene iap4 of Spodoptera litura nucleopolyhedrovirus

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Abstract

Baculoviruses possess two types of anti-apoptotic genes, p35 and inhibitor of apoptosis (iap). In this study, we cloned a novel IAP family member, Splt-IAP4, from Spodoptera litura nucleopolyhedrovirus (SpltNPV). ScanProsite analysis of Splt-IAP4 amino acid sequence show that it contain a baculovirus IAP repeat (BIR) motif at the N-terminal portion from 18 to 61 amino acid and a Zinc finger RING motif near its C-terminus. Baculovirus IAPs could be divided into five types from IAP1 to IAP5 according to amino acid sequence homology, so the Splt-IAP4 was grouped into IAP4 because of containing a single BIR motif. Alignment of the six IAP4s in sequenced baculovirus genomes indicated that the Splt-IAP4 gene shared 74% amino acid sequence similarity with Spodoptera littoralis NPV (SpliNPV) IAP4 higher than other baculovirus IAP4 proteins, suggesting evolutionary conservation. In transient expression assay, Splt-IAP4 was not able to suppress apoptosis induced by a mutant AcMNPV deficient in p35 (vAcAnh) infection and rescue the mutant virus replication from apoptosis in Sf-9 cells. Cell viabilities analysis showed that Splt-IAP4 could not inhibit or delay the apoptosis of Sf-9 cells induced by vAcAnh infection. In summary, Splt-IAP4 had no anti-apoptotic function during vAcAnh-infected Sf-9 cells.

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Acknowledgments

This research was supported by the National Nature Science Foundation of China (No. 30530540), the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program) (No. 2003CB114202), and the Hi-tech Research and Development Program of China (863 Program) (No. 2006AA10A210).

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Correspondence to Qian Yu.

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Yu, Q. Identification and functional analysis of the putative anti-apoptotic gene iap4 of Spodoptera litura nucleopolyhedrovirus. Virus Genes 41, 298–304 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11262-010-0513-4

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Keywords

  • Functional analysis
  • Anti-apoptotic gene
  • Baculovirus
  • Splt-iap4
  • SpltNPV