Repression of MHC class I gene promoter activity by two-exon Tat of HIV

Science  28 May 1993:
Vol. 260, Issue 5112, pp. 1320-1322
DOI: 10.1126/science.8493575


Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecules are the major receptors for viral peptides and serve as targets for specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes. Human immunodeficiency virus-type 1 (HIV-1) specifically decreased activity of an MHC class I gene promoter up to 12-fold. Repression was effected by the HIV-1 Tat protein derived from a spliced viral transcript (two-exon Tat). These studies define an activity for two-exon Tat distinct from that of one-exon Tat and suggest a mechanism whereby HIV-1-infected cells might be able to avoid immune surveillance, allowing the virus to persist in the infected host.

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