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Liposome destabilization induced by the HIV-1 fusion peptide. Effect of a single amino acid substitution

by F. B. Pereira, F. M. Goni, J. L. Nieva
FEBS Letters ()

Abstract

The 23-residue synthetic peptide representing the N-terminus of HIV-1 gp41 is known to induce either leakage or fusion of lipid vesicles depending on the experimental conditions. In this paper we report that a polar amino acid substitution V???E at position 2, known to block gp41 activity in vivo, makes the peptide unable to destabilize and/or fuse membranes. Moreover this variant, unlike the parent peptide, is never found in the membrane-associated ?? conformation.

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