Predicted membrane topology of the coronavirus protein E1

Biochemistry. 1986 Mar 25;25(6):1335-9. doi: 10.1021/bi00354a022.


The structure of the envelope protein E1 of two coronaviruses, mouse hepatitis virus strain A59 and infectious bronchitis virus, was analyzed by applying several theoretical methods to their amino acid sequence. The results of these analyses combined with earlier data on the orientation and protease sensitivity of E1 assembled in microsomal membranes lead to a topological model. According to this model, the protein is anchored in the lipid bilayer by three successive membrane-spanning helices present in its N-terminal half whereas the C-terminal part is thought to be associated with the membrane surface; these interactions with the membrane protect almost the complete polypeptide against protease digestion. In addition, it is predicted that the insertion of E1 into the membrane occurs by the recognition of the internal transmembrane region(s) as a signal sequence.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Calorimetry
  • Coronaviridae / genetics*
  • Genes
  • Genes, Viral
  • Infectious bronchitis virus / genetics*
  • Intracellular Membranes / ultrastructure
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Mice
  • Microsomes / ultrastructure
  • Murine hepatitis virus / genetics*
  • Thermodynamics
  • Viral Envelope Proteins / genetics*


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Viral Envelope Proteins