CADM1 is essential for KSHV-encoded vGPCR-and vFLIP-mediated chronic NF-κB activation

PLoS Pathog. 2018 Apr 26;14(4):e1006968. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1006968. eCollection 2018 Apr.


Approximately 12% of all human cancers worldwide are caused by infections with oncogenic viruses. Kaposi's sarcoma herpesvirus/human herpesvirus 8 (KSHV/HHV8) is one of the oncogenic viruses responsible for human cancers, including Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), Primary Effusion Lymphoma (PEL), and the lymphoproliferative disorder multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD). Chronic inflammation mediated by KSHV infection plays a decisive role in the development and survival of these cancers. NF-κB, a family of transcription factors regulating inflammation, cell survival, and proliferation, is persistently activated in KSHV-infected cells. The KSHV latent and lytic expressing oncogenes involved in NF-κB activation are vFLIP/K13 and vGPCR, respectively. However, the mechanisms by which NF-κB is activated by vFLIP and vGPCR are poorly understood. In this study, we have found that a host molecule, Cell Adhesion Molecule 1 (CADM1), is robustly upregulated in KSHV-infected PBMCs and KSHV-associated PEL cells. Further investigation determined that both vFLIP and vGPCR interacted with CADM1. The PDZ binding motif localized at the carboxyl terminus of CADM1 is essential for both vGPCR and vFLIP to maintain chronic NF-κB activation. Membrane lipid raft associated CADM1 interaction with vFLIP is critical for the initiation of IKK kinase complex and NF-κB activation in the PEL cells. In addition, CADM1 played essential roles in the survival of KSHV-associated PEL cells. These data indicate that CADM1 plays key roles in the activation of NF-κB pathways during latent and lytic phases of the KSHV life cycle and the survival of KSHV-infected cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Adhesion Molecule-1 / genetics
  • Cell Adhesion Molecule-1 / metabolism*
  • Herpesvirus 8, Human / pathogenicity
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, Primary Effusion / genetics
  • Lymphoma, Primary Effusion / metabolism*
  • Lymphoma, Primary Effusion / virology
  • NF-kappa B / genetics
  • NF-kappa B / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Chemokine / genetics
  • Receptors, Chemokine / metabolism*
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / genetics
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / metabolism*
  • Sarcoma, Kaposi / virology
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Viral Proteins / genetics
  • Viral Proteins / metabolism*


  • CADM1 protein, human
  • Cell Adhesion Molecule-1
  • G protein-coupled receptor, Human herpesvirus 8
  • NF-kappa B
  • ORF74 protein, Human herpesvirus 8
  • Receptors, Chemokine
  • Viral Proteins
  • viral FLIP protein, Human herpesvirus 8