Feline immunodeficiency virus orfa alters gene expression of splicing factors and proteasome-ubiquitination proteins Academic Article uri icon

publication date

  • 2008


  • Expression of the feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) accessory protein OrfA (or Orf2) is critical for efficient viral replication in lymphocytes, both in vitro and in vivo. OrfA has been reported to exhibit functions in common with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) accessory proteins Vpr and Tat, although the function of OrfA has not been fully explained. Here, we use microarray analysis to characterize how OrfA modulates the gene expression profile of T-lymphocytes. The primary IL-2-dependent T-cell line 104-C1 was transduced to express OrfA. Functional expression of OrfA was demonstrated by trans complementation of the OrfA-defective clone, FIV-34TF10. OrfA-expressing cells had a slightly reduced cell proliferation rate but did not exhibit any significant alteration in cell cycle distribution. Reverse-transcribed RNA from cells expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) or GFP+OrfA were hybridized to Affymetrix HU133 Plus 2.0 microarray chips representing more than 47,000 genome-wide transcripts. By using two statistical approaches, 461 (Rank Products) and 277 (ANOVA) genes were identified as modulated by OrfA expression. The functional relevance of the differentially expressed genes was explored by Ingenuity Pathway Analysis. The analyses revealed alterations in genes critical for RNA post-transcriptional modifications and protein ubiquitination as the two most significant functional outcomes of OrfA expression. In these two groups, several subunits of the spliceosome, cellular splicing factors and family members of the proteasome-ubiquitination system were identified. These findings provide novel information on the versatile function of OrfA during FIV infection and indicate a fine-tuning mechanism of the cellular environment by OrfA to facilitate efficient FIV replication.