Early Steps in Rotavirus Cell Entry

  • S. Lopez
  • C. F. Arias
Part of the Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology book series (CT MICROBIOLOGY, volume 309)


Rotaviruses, the leading cause of severe dehydrating diarrhea in infants and young children worldwide, are non-enveloped viruses formed by three concentric layers of protein that enclose a genome of double-stranded RNA. These viruses have a specific cell tropism in vivo, infecting primarily the mature enterocytes of the villi of the small intestine. It has been found that rotavirus cell entry is a complex multistep process, in which different domains of the rotavirus surface proteins interact sequentially with different cell surface molecules, which act as attachment and entry receptors. These recently described molecules include integrins (α2β1, αvβ3, and αxβ2) and a heat shock protein (hsc70), and have been found to be associated with cell membrane lipidmicrodomains. The requirement for several cell molecules, which might need to be present and organized in a precise fashion, could explain the cell and tissue tropism of these viruses. This review focuses on recent data describing the interactions between the virus and its receptors, the role of lipid microdomains in rotavirus infection, and the possible mechanism of rotavirus cell entry.


Sialic Acid MA104 Cell Trypsin Cleavage Nonenveloped Virus Heat Shock Protein Hsc70 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departamento de Genética del Desarrollo y Fisiología Molecular, Instituto de BiotecnologíaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoCuernavacaMexico

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