Influenza virus infection causes global RNAPII termination defects

Nan Zhao, Vittorio Sebastiano, Natasha Moshkina, Nacho Mena, Judd Hultquist, David Jimenez-Morales, Yixuan Ma, Alex Rialdi, Randy Albrecht, Romain Fenouil, Maria Teresa Sánchez-Aparicio, Juan Ayllon, Sweta Ravisankar, Bahareh Haddad, Jessica Sook Yuin Ho, Diana Low, Jian Jin, Vyacheslav Yurchenko, Rab K. Prinjha, Alexander TarakhovskyMassimo Squatrito, Dalila Pinto, Kimaada Allette, Minji Byun, Melissa Laird Smith, Robert Sebra, Ernesto Guccione, Terrence Tumpey, Nevan Krogan, Benjamin Greenbaum, Harm van Bakel, Adolfo García-Sastre, Ivan Marazzi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Viral infection perturbs host cells and can be used to uncover regulatory mechanisms controlling cellular responses and susceptibility to infections. Using cell biological, biochemical, and genetic tools, we reveal that influenza A virus (IAV) infection induces global transcriptional defects at the 3′ ends of active host genes and RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) run-through into extragenic regions. Deregulated RNAPII leads to expression of aberrant RNAs (3′ extensions and host-gene fusions) that ultimately cause global transcriptional downregulation of physiological transcripts, an effect influencing antiviral response and virulence. This phenomenon occurs with multiple strains of IAV, is dependent on influenza NS1 protein, and can be modulated by SUMOylation of an intrinsically disordered region (IDR) of NS1 expressed by the 1918 pandemic IAV strain. Our data identify a strategy used by IAV to suppress host gene expression and indicate that polymorphisms in IDRs of viral proteins can affect the outcome of an infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)885-893
Number of pages9
JournalNature Structural and Molecular Biology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Structural Biology
  • Molecular Biology


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