Two molecularly cloned viruses, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV- 1)-NL4-3 (NL4-3) and HIV-1-HXB-2 (HXB-2), have been used to study the role of HIV-1 auxiliary genes in the establishment of chronic virus producers. NL4-3 encodes all known HIV-1 proteins, whereas HXB-2 is defective for three auxiliary genes: vpr, vpu, and nef. Studies were done in H9 cells, a T-cell line unusually permissive for the establishment of chronic virus producers. NL4-3 and HXB-2 undergo lytic phases of infection in H9 cultures with HXB-2, but not NL4-3, supporting the efficient establishment of chronic virus producers. Tests of mutant NL4-3 genomes containing various combinations of defective auxiliary genes revealed that both vpr and nef limited the ability of NL4-3 to establish chronic virus producers. Tests of a series of recombinants between NL4-3 and HXB-2 revealed that 5' internal sequences as well as fragments containing defective auxiliary genes affected the establishment of chronic virus producers. Viral envelope sequences and levels of virus production did not correlate with the ability to establish chronic virus producers. These results suggest that complex interactions of viral auxiliary and nonauxiliary gene functions with the host cell determine the ability to establish chronic virus producers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science