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Dissecting HSV-1-induced host shut-off at RNA level

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Title:Dissecting HSV-1-induced host shut-off at RNA level
Creators Name:Friedel, C.C. and Whisnant, A.W. and Djakovic, L. and Rutkowski, A.J. and Friedl, M.S. and Kluge, M. and Williamson, J.C. and Sai, S. and Oliveira Vidal, R. and Sauer, S. and Hennig, T. and Prusty, B. and Lehner, P.J. and Matheson, N.J. and Erhard, F. and Dölken, L.
Abstract:Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) installs a profound host shut-off during lytic infection. The virion host shut-off (vhs) protein plays a key role in this process by efficiently cleaving both host and viral mRNAs in a translation-initiation-dependent manner. Furthermore, the onset of viral DNA replication is accompanied by a rapid decline in transcriptional activity of the host genome. Both mechanisms have tremendous impact on the RNA expression profile of the infected cells. To dissect their relative contributions and elucidate gene-specific host transcriptional responses throughout the first 8h of lytic HSV-1 infection, we here employed RNA-seq of total, newly transcribed (4sU-labelled) and chromatin-associated RNA in wild-type (WT) and Δvhs infection of primary human fibroblasts. Following virus entry, vhs activity rapidly plateaued at an elimination rate of around 30% of cellular mRNAs per hour until 8h p.i. In parallel, host transcriptional activity dropped down to 10-20%. While the combined effects of both phenomena dominated infection-induced changes in total RNA, extensive gene-specific transcriptional regulation was observable in chromatin-associated RNA. This was surprisingly concordant between WT HSV-1 and its Δvhs mutant and at least in parts mediated by the embryonic transcription factor DUX4. Furthermore, both WT and Δvhs infection induced strong transcriptional up-regulation of a small subset of genes. Most of these were either poorly or not at all expressed prior to infection but already primed by H3K4me3 histone marks at their promoters. Most interestingly, analysis of chromatin-associated RNA revealed vhs-nuclease-activity-dependent transcriptional down-regulation of at least 150 cellular genes, in particular of many genes encoding integrin adhesome and extracellular matrix components. This was accompanied by a vhs-dependent reduction in protein levels by 8h p.i. for many of these genes. In summary, our study provides a comprehensive picture of the molecular mechanisms that govern cellular RNA metabolism during the first 8h of lytic HSV-1 infection.
Publisher:Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
Article Number:2020.05.20.106039
Date:20 May 2020
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.05.20.106039

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