The transactivator protein of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) (Tat) is a powerful activator of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB), acting through degradation of the inhibitor IκB-α (F. Demarchi, F. d’Adda di Fagagna, A. Falaschi, and M. Giacca, J. Virol. 70:4427–4437, 1996). Here, we show that this activity of Tat requires the function of the cellular interferon-inducible protein kinase PKR. Tat-mediated NF-κB activation and transcriptional induction of the HIV-1 long terminal repeat were impaired in murine cells in which the PKR gene was knocked out. Both functions were restored by cotransfection of Tat with the cDNA for PKR. Expression of a dominant-negative mutant of PKR specifically reduced the levels of Tat transactivation in different human cell types. Activation of NF-κB by Tat required integrity of the basic domain of Tat; previous studies have indicated that this domain is necessary for specific Tat-PKR interaction
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.