Post-transcriptional regulation of HIV-1 gene expression is mediated by interactions between viral transcripts and viral/cellular proteins. For HIV-1, post-transcriptional nuclear control allows for the export of intron-containing RNAs which are normally retained in the nucleus. Specific signals on the viral RNAs, such as instability sequences (INS) and Rev responsive element (RRE), are binding sites for viral and cellular factors that serve to regulate RNA-export. The HIV-1 encoded viral Rev protein binds to the RRE found on unspliced and incompletely spliced viral RNAs. Binding by Rev directs the export of these RNAs from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. Previously, Rev co-factors have been found to include cellular factors such as CRM1, DDX3, PIMT and others. In this work, the nuclear matrix protein Matrin 3 is shown to bind Rev/RRE-containing viral RNA. This binding interaction stabilizes unspliced and partially spliced HIV-1 transcripts leading to increased cytoplasmic expression of these viral RNAs
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