We have examined the transcriptional regulation of the 70-kDa (70K) heat shock gene family following infection of human and monkey cells with four different DNA viruses: adenovirus type 5 (Ad5), herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1), simian virus 40, and vaccinia virus. Our results indicate that induction of these genes is not a general response to the stress of viral infection but is instead a highly specific response, both with regard to the inducing virus and with regard to the target gene. Of three 70K heat shock genes examined, only hsp70 was induced during viral infection, and induction occurred only after infection by Ad5 and HSV-1. As revealed by genomic footprinting analysis, the mechanism of transcriptional activation of hsp70 during Ad5 or HSV-1 infection does not involve changes in the avidity of binding of basal transcription factors to the hsp70 promoter. In HSV-1-infected HeLa cells, transcriptional activation of hsp70 was quite transient, following which transcription was rapidly repressed; this was accompanied by the release of bound factors from the hsp70 promoter. In addition to the selectivity which characterizes the viral activation of hsp70 transcription, our results indicate that the consequences of this activation, as measured by changes in hsp70 mRNA levels and protein synthesis, are also virus specific.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science