Epstein-Barr Virus Enhances Cancer-Specific Aberrant Splicing of TSG101 Pre-mRNA

Huey Huey Chua, Toshiki Kameyama, Akila Mayeda, Te Huei Yeh

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Tumor viruses gain control of cellular functions when they infect and transform host cells. Alternative splicing is one of the cellular processes exploited by tumor viruses to benefit viral replication and support oncogenesis. Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) participates in a number of cancers, as reported mostly in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) and Burkitt lymphoma (BL). Using RT-nested-PCR and Northern blot analysis in NPC and BL cells, here we demonstrate that EBV promotes specific alternative splicing of TSG101 pre-mRNA, which generates the TSG101∆154-1054 variant though the agency of its viral proteins, such as EBNA-1, Zta and Rta. The level of TSG101∆154-1054 is particularly enhanced upon EBV entry into the lytic cycle, increasing protein stability of TSG101 and causing the cumulative synthesis of EBV late lytic proteins, such as VCA and gp350/220. TSG101∆154-1054-mediated production of VCA and gp350/220 is blocked by the overexpression of a translational mutant of TSG101∆154-1054 or by the depletion of full-length TSG101, which is con-sistent with the known role of the TSG101∆154-1054 protein in stabilizing the TSG101 protein. NPC patients whose tumor tissues express TSG101∆154-1054 have high serum levels of anti-VCA antibodies and high levels of viral DNA in their tumors. Our findings highlight the functional importance of TSG101∆154-1054 in allowing full completion of the EBV lytic cycle to produce viral particles. We propose that targeting EBV-induced TSG101 alternative splicing has broad potential as a therapeutic to treat EBV-associated malignancies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2516
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01-03-2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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