Host factors are required for efficient HIV-1 replication. To identify these factors, genome-wide RNA interference screening was performed using a human T cell line. In the present study, we assessed whether eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4A isoform 2 (eIF4A2), a DEAD-box protein identified in our screen, is necessary for efficient HIV-1 replication. Exploiting MT4C5 cells depleted of eIF4A2 by stable expression of eIF4A2-specific short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) using a lentiviral system, we found that depletion of eIF4A2 markedly inhibited the infection of a replication-competent reporter HIV-1. eIF4A2 depletion reduced the efficiency of viral cDNA synthesis with virion entry into target cells being unaffected. Depletion of eIF4A2 also inhibited HIV-1 spreading infection in a knockdown level-dependent manner. These results suggest that HIV-1 requires eIF4A2 for optimal replication in human T cells.
Keywords: DEAD-box protein; HIV-1; Host factor; RNAi; Viral cDNA synthesis; eIF4A2.
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