The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 Rev and human T-cell leukemia virus type I Rex transactivators are posttranscriptional regulatory proteins that promote retroviral gene expression by interacting with specific viral mRNAs. Rev and Rex have markedly dissimilar amino acid sequences and RNA target specificities but are thought to act through the same cellular pathway. In this report, we demonstrate that short peptide domains which are required for effector activity in Rev and Rex are functionally interchangeable. Activity of these effector domains depends upon a previously unrecognized tetrapeptide motif that is present in both Rev and Rex and also in analogous proteins from other complex retroviruses. The conserved effector motif may mediate essential interactions of Rev, Rex, and other transactivators of this type with a common cellular cofactor.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science