Stepwise Priming by Acidic pH and a High K+ Concentration Is Required for Efficient Uncoating of Influenza A Virus Cores after Penetration

  • Stauffer S
  • Feng Y
  • Nebioglu F
 et al. 
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UNLABELLED Influenza A virus (IAV) uses the low pH in late endocytic vacuoles as a cue for penetration by membrane fusion. Here, we analyzed the prefusion reactions that prepare the core for uncoating after it has been delivered to the cytosol. We found that this priming process occurs in two steps that are mediated by the envelope-embedded M2 ion channel. The first weakens the interactions between the matrix protein, M1, and the viral ribonucleoprotein bundle. It involves a conformational change in a linker sequence and the C-terminal domain of M1 after exposure to a pH below 6.5. The second step is triggered by a pH of

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  • S. Stauffer

  • Y. Feng

  • F. Nebioglu

  • R. Heilig

  • P. Picotti

  • A. Helenius

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