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Concerted interactions between multiple gp41 trimers and the target cell lipidome may be required for HIV-1 entry

Gorai, B and Sahoo, AK and Srivastava, A and Dixit, NM and Maiti, PK (2021) Concerted interactions between multiple gp41 trimers and the target cell lipidome may be required for HIV-1 entry. In: Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling . (In Press)

acs.jcim.0c01291.pdf - Accepted Version

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Official URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jcim.0c01291


The HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein gp41 mediates the fusion between viral and host cell membranes leading to virus entry and target cell infection. Despite years of research, important aspects of this process such as the number of gp41 trimers involved and how they orchestrate the rearrangement of the lipids in the apposed membranes along the fusion pathway remain obscure. To elucidate these molecular underpinnings, we performed coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations of HIV-1 virions pinned to the CD4 T cell membrane by different numbers of gp41 trimers. We built realistic cell and viral membranes by mimicking their respective lipid compositions. We found that a single gp41 was inadequate for mediating fusion. Lipid mixing between membranes, indicating the onset of fusion, was efficient when three or more gp41 trimers pinned the membranes. The gp41 trimers interacted strongly with many different lipids in the host cell membrane, triggering lipid configurational rearrangements, exchange, and mixing. Simpler membranes, comprising fewer lipid types, displayed strong resistance to fusion, revealing the crucial role of the lipidomes in HIV-1 entry. Performing simulations at different temperatures, we estimated the free energy barrier to lipid mixing, and hence membrane stalk formation, with three and four tethering gp41 trimers to be -6.2 kcal/mol, a >4-fold reduction over estimates without gp41. Together, these findings present molecular-level, quantitative insights into the early stages of gp41-mediated HIV-1 entry. Preventing the requisite gp41 molecules from tethering the membranes or altering membrane lipid compositions may be potential intervention strategies. © XXXX American Chemical Society

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling
Publisher: American Chemical Society
Additional Information: Copyright to this article belongs to American Chemical Society
Keywords: Cytology; Diseases; Free energy; Lipids; Mixing; Molecular dynamics; Oligomers; T-cells; Viruses, Coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations; Envelope glycoproteins; Intervention strategy; Lipid composition; Lipid mixing; Membrane lipid composition; Molecular levels; Target cells, Membranes
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Molecular Biophysics Unit
Division of Interdisciplinary Sciences > Centre for Biosystems Science and Engineering
Division of Mechanical Sciences > Chemical Engineering
Division of Physical & Mathematical Sciences > Physics
Date Deposited: 01 Feb 2021 09:22
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2021 09:22
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/67810

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