Analysis of potato virus X replicase and TGBp3 subcellular locations

Virology. 2009 Oct 25;393(2):272-85. doi: 10.1016/j.virol.2009.08.002. Epub 2009 Sep 3.


Potato virus X (PVX) infection leads to certain cytopathological modifications of the host endomembrane system. The subcellular location of the PVX replicase was previously unknown while the PVX TGBp3 protein was previously reported to reside in the ER. Using PVX infectious clones expressing the green fluorescent protein reporter, and antisera detecting the PVX replicase and host membrane markers, we examined the subcellular distribution of the PVX replicase in relation to the TGBp3. Confocal and electron microscopic observations revealed that the replicase localizes in membrane bound structures that derive from the ER. A subset of TGBp3 resides in the ER at the same location as the replicase. Sucrose gradient fractionation showed that the PVX replicase and TGBp3 proteins co-fractionate with ER marker proteins. This localization represents a region where both proteins may be synthesized and/or function. There is no evidence to indicate that either PVX protein moves into the Golgi apparatus. Cerulenin, a drug that inhibits de novo membrane synthesis, also inhibited PVX replication. These combined data indicate that PVX replication relies on ER-derived membrane recruitment and membrane proliferation.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Membrane / virology
  • Cerulenin / pharmacology
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / metabolism
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / virology*
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / genetics
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / metabolism
  • Microscopy, Confocal
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Plant Leaves / ultrastructure
  • Plant Leaves / virology
  • Potexvirus / genetics
  • Potexvirus / metabolism*
  • Protoplasts / virology
  • RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase / genetics
  • RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase / metabolism*
  • Tobacco / virology
  • Viral Proteins / genetics
  • Viral Proteins / metabolism*


  • Viral Proteins
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Cerulenin
  • RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase