Investigating the hepatitis B virus life cycle using engineered reporter hepatitis B viruses

Hironori Nishitsuji, Keisuke Harada, Saneyuki Ujino, Jing Zhang, Michinori Kohara, Masaya Sugiyama, Masashi Mizokami, Kunitada Shimotohno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) increases the risk of developing fibrosis, cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma. Current therapies are limited to type-I interferons and/or nucleos(t)ide analogues; however, these are only partially effective. The development of novel anti-HBV agents for new treatment strategies has been hampered by the lack of a suitable system that allows the in vitro replication of HBV. Studies of virus infection/replication at the molecular level using wild-type HBV are labor-intensive and time-consuming. To overcome these problems, we previously constructed a recombinant reporter HBV bearing the NanoLuc gene and showed its usefulness in identifying factors that affect HBV proliferation. Because this system mimics the early stage of the HBV life cycle faithfully, we conducted a quantitative analysis of HBV infectivity to several human hepatocyte cell lines as well as the effect of dimethyl sulfoxide and HBV protein X on the early stage of HBV proliferation using this system. Furthermore, we developed a system to produce a reporter HBV expressing a pol gene. These reporter HBV may provide an opportunity to enhance our understanding of the HBV life cycle and aid strategies for the development of new anti-HBV agents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-249
Number of pages9
JournalCancer science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01-2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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