Timestamping integrative approach to understand secondary envelopment of human cytomegalovirus
Prof Kay Grünewald
University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Dr Konstantinos Thalassinos
University College London, United Kingdom
Dr Jens Bosse
Heinrich Pette Institute, Leibniz-Institute for Experimental Virology, Germany
Prof Maya Topf
Birkbeck, University of London, United Kingdom
Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a herpes virus and distant relative of the well-known human herpesvirus 1 which causes cold sores. HCMV infection is the leading viral cause of congenital birth defects in the developed world and can be life-threatening for organ transplant recipients. HCMV has a very complex life cycle that is not well understood. An essential step during virus assembly is the recruitment of a membrane by capsids, resulting in enveloped particles inside transport vesicles.
We will study how this process, called secondary envelopment, is coordinated in time and space. We will use a novel technique to isolate specific steps during secondary envelopment and analyse them, providing high-resolution data. Computational methods will help us to use the data to make a coherent video of the process.
Our findings will provide a much more detailed understanding of this crucial step in HCMV’s life cycle.