Viral Membrane Fusion

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Viral Membrane Fusion

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Title: Viral Membrane Fusion
Author: Harrison, Stephen
Citation: Harrison, Stephen C. 2008. Viral membrane fusion. Nature Structural and Molecular Biology 15, no. 7: 690-698.
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Abstract: Infection by viruses having lipid-bilayer envelopes proceeds through fusion of the viral membrane with a membrane of the target cell. Viral ‘fusion proteins’ facilitate this process. They vary greatly in structure, but all seem to have a common mechanism of action, in which a ligand-triggered, largescale conformational change in the fusion protein is coupled to apposition and merger of the two bilayers. We describe three examples—the influenza virus hemagglutinin, the flavivirus E protein and the vesicular stomatitis virus G protein—in some detail, to illustrate the ways in which different structures have evolved to implement this common mechanism. Fusion inhibitors can be effective antiviral agents.
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