The SARS coronavirus nucleocapsid protein - Forms and functions

Chung Ke Chang, Ming Hon Hou, Chi Fon Chang, Chwan Deng Hsiao, Tai-huang Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The nucleocapsid phosphoprotein of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV N protein) packages the viral genome into a helical ribonucleocapsid (RNP) and plays a fundamental role during viral self-assembly. It is a protein with multifarious activities. In this article we will review our current understanding of the N protein structure and its interaction with nucleic acid. Highlights of the progresses include uncovering the modular organization, determining the structures of the structural domains, realizing the roles of protein disorder in protein-protein and protein-nucleic acid interactions, and visualizing the ribonucleoprotein (RNP) structure inside the virions. It was also demonstrated that N-protein binds to nucleic acid at multiple sites with a coupled-allostery manner. We propose a SARS-CoV RNP model that conforms to existing data and bears resemblance to the existing RNP structures of RNA viruses. The model highlights the critical role of modular organization and intrinsic disorder of the N protein in the formation and functions of the dynamic RNP capsid in RNA viruses. This paper forms part of a symposium in Antiviral Research on "From SARS to MERS: 10 years of research on highly pathogenic human coronaviruses."

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-50
Number of pages12
JournalAntiviral Research
Volume103
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Mar 1

Fingerprint

SARS Virus
Proteins
Nucleic Acids
Coronavirus
RNA Viruses
Virus Assembly
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome
Nucleocapsid
Ribonucleoproteins
Coronavirus nucleocapsid protein
Viral Genome
Capsid
Phosphoproteins
Research
Virion
Antiviral Agents

Keywords

  • Capsid packaging
  • Coronavirus
  • Intrinsic disorder
  • Nucleocapsid protein
  • RNP
  • SARS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Virology

Cite this

The SARS coronavirus nucleocapsid protein - Forms and functions. / Chang, Chung Ke; Hou, Ming Hon; Chang, Chi Fon; Hsiao, Chwan Deng; Huang, Tai-huang.

In: Antiviral Research, Vol. 103, No. 1, 01.03.2014, p. 39-50.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Chang, Chung Ke ; Hou, Ming Hon ; Chang, Chi Fon ; Hsiao, Chwan Deng ; Huang, Tai-huang. / The SARS coronavirus nucleocapsid protein - Forms and functions. In: Antiviral Research. 2014 ; Vol. 103, No. 1. pp. 39-50.
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