Functional Dissection of the Dominant Role of CD55 in Protecting Vesicular Stomatitis Virus against Complement-Mediated Neutralization

Viruses  26 February 2021 | doi:10.3390/v13030373  

Nisha Asok Kumar; Sreenath Muraleedharan Suma; Umerali Kunnakkadan; Joydeep Nag; Reshma Koolaparambil Mukesh; Douglas S. Lyles; John Bernet Johnson

ABSTRACT

The human complement system is an important part of the innate immune system. Its effector pathways largely mediate virus neutralization. Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) activates the classical pathway of the complement, leading to virus neutralization by lysis. Two host-derived membrane-associated regulators of complement activation (RCA), CD55 and CD46, which are incorporated into the VSV envelope during egress, confer protection by delaying/resisting complement-mediated neutralization. We showed previously that CD55 is more effective than CD46 in the inhibition of neutralization. In this study, we identified that, at the protein level, VSV infection resulted in the down-regulation of CD46 but not CD55. The mRNA of both the RCAs was significantly down-regulated by VSV, but it was delayed in the case of CD55. The immunoblot analysis of the levels of RCAs in the progeny virion harvested at three specific time intervals, points to an equal ratio of its distribution relative to viral proteins. Besides reconfirming the dominant role of CD55 over CD46 in shielding VSV from complement, our results also highlight the importance of the subtle modulation in the expression pattern of RCAs in a system naturally expressing them.

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