Zinc-finger antiviral protein inhibits XMRV infection

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The zinc-finger antiviral protein (ZAP) is a host factor that specifically inhibits the replication of certain viruses, including Moloney murine leukemia virus (MoMLV), HIV-1, and certain alphaviruses and filoviruses. ZAP binds to specific viral mRNAs and recruits cellular mRNA degradation machinery to degrade the target RNA. The common features of ZAP-responsive RNA sequences remain elusive and thus whether a virus is susceptible to ZAP can only be determined experimentally. Xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) is a recently identified γ-retrovirus that was originally thought to be involved in prostate cancer and chronic fatigue syndrome but recently proved to be a laboratory artefact. Nonetheless, XMRV as a new retrovirus has been extensively studied. Since XMRV and MoMLV share only 67.9% sequence identity in the 3'UTRs, which is the target sequence of ZAP in MoMLV, whether XMRV is susceptible to ZAP remains to be determined.




Wang, X., Tu, F., Zhu, Y., & Gao, G. (2012). Zinc-finger antiviral protein inhibits XMRV infection. PLoS ONE, 7(6). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0039159

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