The immediate early genes of human cytomegalovirus upregulate expression of the interleukin-2 and interleukin-2 receptor genes

Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 1991 Sep;5(3):292-6. doi: 10.1165/ajrcmb/5.3.292.


Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) immediate early (IE) genes act as trans-acting factors to upregulate various viral promoters. We used various IE plasmid constructs in transient transfection assays and demonstrated that the HCMV IE2 gene product upregulated expression from the interleukin (IL)-2 and IL-2 receptor (IL-2R) promoters and increased amounts of endogenous, steady-state IL-2 and IL-2R RNA. In marked contrast, the IE1 gene product, which can upregulate the major IE promoter and the IL-1 beta promoter, had no effect on the IL-2 and IL-2R promoters. These studies suggest a role for the HCMV IE2 gene product as a modulator of the inflammatory response associated with HCMV infection.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cytomegalovirus / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Genes, Viral*
  • Humans
  • Immediate-Early Proteins / genetics*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Interleukin-2 / genetics*
  • Lymphoma, T-Cell / genetics
  • Membrane Glycoproteins*
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2 / genetics*
  • T-Lymphocytes / physiology*
  • Trans-Activators*
  • Transfection
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Viral Envelope Proteins*
  • Viral Proteins / genetics*


  • IE1 protein, cytomegalovirus
  • IE2 protein, Cytomegalovirus
  • Immediate-Early Proteins
  • Interleukin-2
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptors, Interleukin-2
  • Trans-Activators
  • UL115 protein, Human herpesvirus 5
  • Viral Envelope Proteins
  • Viral Proteins
  • glycoprotein H, Cytomegalovirus
  • glycoprotein H, Human cytomegalovirus
  • glycoprotein O, cytomegalovirus