Regulation of the immediate-early gene BZLF1 is assumed to play a key role in triggering the lytic replication of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV). The expression of BZLF1 is regulated on multiple levels, including control of transcription by several positive and negative cis-acting elements as well as posttranslational modifications and protein-protein interactions. Localization of BZLF1 on one strand of the genome and the latent EBNA1 transcription unit on the complementary strand suggests a regulatory mechanism via hybridization of antisense RNA. With a plasmid encoding a defective BZLF1 RNA, which could not be translated, we were able to induce expression of endogenous BZLF1 gene product Zta and other proteins of the lytic cycle. Our data show for the first time that latent replication is stabilized by negative regulation of an immediate-early gene of the lytic cycle by a posttranscriptional mechanism. This might be a common theme of herpes simplex virus and EBV latency
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.