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Altered error specificity of RNase H-deficient HIV-1 reverse transcriptases during DNA-dependent DNA synthesis

AuthorsÁlvarez, Mar ; Barrioluengo, Verónica ; Menéndez-Arias, Luis
Issue Date2013
PublisherOxford University Press
CitationNucleic Acids Research 41: 4601- 4612 (2013)
AbstractAsp443 and Glu478 are essential active site residues in the RNase H domain of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) reverse transcriptase (RT). We have investigated the effects of substituting Asn for Asp443 or Gln for Glu478 on the fidelity of DNA-dependent DNA synthesis of phylogenetically diverse HIV-1 RTs. In M13mp2 lacZα-based forward mutation assays, HIV-1 group M (BH10) and group O RTs bearing substitutions D443N, E478Q, V75I/D443N or V75I/E478Q showed 2.0-to 6.6-fold increased accuracy in comparison with the corresponding wild-type enzymes. This was a consequence of their lower base substitution error rates. One-nucleotide deletions and insertions represented between 30 and 68% of all errors identified in the mutational spectra of RNase H-deficient HIV-1 group O RTs. In comparison with the wild-type RT, these enzymes showed higher frameshift error rates and higher dissociation rate constants (koff) for DNA/DNA template-primers. The effects on frameshift fidelity were similar to those reported for mutation E89G and suggest that in HIV-1 group O RT, RNase H inactivation could affect template/primer slippage. Our results support a role for the RNase H domain during plus-strand DNA polymerization and suggest that mutations affecting RNase H function could also contribute to retrovirus variability during the later steps of reverse transcription. © 2013 The Author(s).
Identifiersdoi: 10.1093/nar/gkt109
issn: 0305-1048
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