Influenza Virus M2 Protein Modifies Membrane Permeability in E. Coli Cells

FEBS Lett. 1994 May 2;343(3):242-6. doi: 10.1016/0014-5793(94)80564-4.


The M2 protein of influenza virus is an integral membrane protein with ion channel activity. This protein has been expressed in E. coli cells in an inducible manner. Expression of the M2 protein causes rapid lysis of BL21(DE3) pLysS E. coli cells upon induction with IPTB. M2 protein increases membrane permeability to a number of hydrophylic molecules, such as ONPG, uridine or impermeant translation inhibitors. The behaviour of M2 in bacteria resembles that of other viral proteins, such as poliovirus 3A and Semliki Forest virus 6K.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Membrane Permeability
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Escherichia coli / growth & development
  • Escherichia coli / metabolism*
  • Escherichia coli / ultrastructure
  • Influenza A virus*
  • Isopropyl Thiogalactoside / pharmacology
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / pharmacology
  • Viral Matrix Proteins / genetics
  • Viral Matrix Proteins / pharmacology*


  • M-protein, influenza virus
  • M2 protein, Influenza A virus
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Viral Matrix Proteins
  • Isopropyl Thiogalactoside