Revisiting the role of histo-blood group antigens in rotavirus host-cell invasion

Nat Commun. 2015 Jan 5:6:5907. doi: 10.1038/ncomms6907.


Histo-blood group antigens (HBGAs) have been proposed as rotavirus receptors. H type-1 and Lewis(b) antigens have been reported to bind VP8* from major human rotavirus genotypes P[4], P[6] and P[8], while VP8* from a rarer P[14] rotavirus recognizes A-type HBGAs. However, the role and significance of HBGA receptors in rotavirus pathogenesis remains uncertain. Here we report that P[14] rotavirus HAL1166 and the related P[9] human rotavirus K8 bind to A-type HBGAs, although neither virus engages the HBGA-specific α1,2-linked fucose moiety. Notably, human rotaviruses DS-1 (P[4]) and RV-3 (P[6]) also use A-type HBGAs for infection, with fucose involvement. However, human P[8] rotavirus Wa does not recognize A-type HBGAs. Furthermore, the common human rotaviruses that we have investigated do not use Lewis(b) and H type-1 antigens. Our results indicate that A-type HBGAs are receptors for human rotaviruses, although rotavirus strains vary in their ability to recognize these antigens.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • ABO Blood-Group System / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Molecular Dynamics Simulation
  • Molecular Structure
  • Oligosaccharides / chemistry
  • Oligosaccharides / metabolism
  • Rotavirus / metabolism*
  • Rotavirus Infections / metabolism
  • Rotavirus Infections / physiopathology*
  • Virus Internalization*


  • ABO Blood-Group System
  • Oligosaccharides