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Generation of H9 T-cells stably expressing a membrane-bound form of the cytoplasmic tail of the Env-glycoprotein: lack of transcomplementation of defective HIV-1 virions encoding C-terminally truncated Env

Denise Holtkotte, Tanya Pfeiffer and Valerie Bosch*

Author Affiliations

Forschungsschwerpunkt Infektion und Krebs, F020, Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, Im Neuenheimer Feld 242, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany

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Retrovirology 2006, 3:27  doi:10.1186/1742-4690-3-27

Published: 16 May 2006


H9-T-cells do not support the replication of mutant HIV-1 encoding Env protein lacking its long cytoplasmic C-terminal domain (Env-CT). Here we describe the generation of a H9-T-cell population constitutively expressing the HIV-1 Env-CT protein domain anchored in the cellular membrane by it homologous membrane-spanning domain (TMD). We confirmed that the Env-TMD-CT protein was associated with cellular membranes, that its expression did not have any obvious cytotoxic effects on the cells and that it did not affect wild-type HIV-1 replication. However, as measured in both a single-round assay as well as in spreading infections, replication competence of mutant pNL-Tr712, lacking the Env-CT, was not restored in this H9 T-cell population. This means that the Env-CT per se cannot transcomplement the replication block of HIV-1 virions encoding C-terminally truncated Env proteins and suggests that the Env-CT likely exerts its function only in the context of the complete Env protein.