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Published in JOURNAL OF VIROLOGY, Jan. 2001, p. 341–350 Vol. 75, No. 1. Copyright © 2001, American Society for Microbiology. Used by permission.


Transporter associated with antigen processing 2 (Tap-2) is responsible for ATP-dependent transport of peptides from the cytosol to the endoplasmic reticulum, where peptides bind to newly synthesized human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I molecules, which are essential for cellular immune responses. Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) latent membrane protein 1 (LMP-1) has been shown to induce the expression of Tap-2. In this study, the induction of endogenous Tap-2 by LMP-1 is shown to be associated with and requires the expression of interferon regulatory factor 7 (IRF-7). In DG75 Burkitt’s lymphoma (BL) cells, in which LMP-1 induces the expression of IRF-7, LMP-1 induced endogenous Tap-2, and ectopic expression of IRF-7 could enhance the induction. In Akata BL cells, in which LMP-1 could not induce IRF-7, LMP-1 could not induce Tap-2. Addition of IRF-7, which complements the defect in Akata cells, could stimulate the expression of Tap-2. Furthermore, LMP-1 and IRF-7A but not other IRF-7 splicing variants could activate endogenous Tap-2. A Tap-2 promoter reporter construct could be activated by the overexpression of IRF-7A. The activation could be specifically enhanced by LMP-1 and was dependent on an intact interferon-stimulated response element (ISRE) present in the Tap-2 promoter. Also, IRF-7 can bind to the Tap-2 promoter under physiological conditions in vivo, as shown by formaldehyde cross-linking, as well as to the Tap-2 ISRE in vitro, as shown by gel mobility shift assays. Furthermore, LMP-1 facilitates the phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of IRF-7. These data point to the role of IRF-7 as a secondary mediator of LMP-1-activated signal transduction for Tap-2 as follows: LMP-1 stimulates the expression of IRF-7 and facilitates its phosphorylation and nuclear translocation, and then the activated IRF-7 mediates the activation of the cellular Tap-2 gene. The induction of Tap-2 by IRF-7 and LMP-1 may have an important implication for the immune response to EBV and its persistence in vivo.

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