Glycoprotein B of herpes simplex virus type 1 oligomerizes through the intermolecular interaction of a 28-amino-acid domain

Sylvie Laquerre, Stanley Person, Joseph C. Glorioso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Herpes simplex virus type 1 glycoprotein B (gB) is an envelope component that plays an essential role in virus infection. The biologically active form of gB is an oligomer that contributes to the process of viral envelope fusion with the cell surface membrane, resulting in viral penetration and initiation of the replication cycle. In previous studies, two discontinuous sites for oligomer formation were identified: a nonessential upstream site located between residues 93 and 282 and an essential downstream site located between residues 596 and 711. In this study, in vitro-transcribed and -translated gB test molecules were used to characterize the sauce active essential membrane- proximal domain. A series of gB test polypeptides mutated in this downstream oligomerization domain were assayed for their abilities to fibrin oligomers with a mutant gB capture polypeptide containing the analogous wild-type domain. Detection of oligomers was achieved by coimmunoprecipitation of two gB mutant molecules by using a monoclonal antibody specific for a hemagglutinin epitope tag introduced into the coding sequence of the capture polypeptide. Analysis of the immune-precipitated products by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis demonstrated that the downstream oligomerization domain resided within residues 626 to 676. This region was further resolved into two segments, residues 626 to 653 and 653 to 675, each of which was independently sufficient to form oligomers. However, residues 626 to 653 provided for a stronger interaction between gB monomers. Moreover, this stretch of 28 amino acids was shown to form oligomers when introduced into the carboxy-terminal region of gB monomers lacking this domain at the normal site, thus indicating that this domain was functionally independent of its natural location within the gB molecule. Further analysis of the sequence within residues 596 to 653 by using mutant test polypeptides altered in individual amino acids revealed that cysteines 9 and 10, located at positions 596 and 633, respectively, were not required for oligomer formation but contributed to dimer formation and/or stabilization. The results of this study suggest that oligomerization of gB monomers is induced by interactions between contiguous residues localized within the ectodomain near the site of molecule insertion into the viral envelope membrane.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1640-1650
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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