Us3 protein kinases encoded by herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) and 2 (HSV-2) are serine/threonine protein kinases and play critical roles in viral replication and pathogenicity in vivo. In the present study, we investigated differences in the biological properties of HSV-1 and HSV-2 Us3 protein kinases and demonstrated that HSV-2 Us3 did not have some of the HSV-1 Us3 kinase functions, including control of nuclear egress of nucleocapsids, localization of UL31 and UL34, and cell surface expression of viral envelope glycoprotein B. In agreement with the observations that HSV-2 Us3 was less important for these functions, the effect of HSV-2 Us3 kinase activity on virulence in mice following intracerebral inoculation was much lower than that of HSV-1 Us3. Furthermore, we showed that alanine substitution in HSV-2 Us3 at a site (aspartic acid at position 147) corresponding to one that can be autophosphorylated in HSV-1 Us3 abolished HSV-2 Us3 kinase activity. Thus, the regulatory and functional effects of Us3 kinase activity are different between HSV-1 and HSV-2.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science