27 Scopus citations


Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV, also called human herpesvirus 8) is linked to the development of Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), primary effusion lymphoma (PEL), and multicentric Castleman's disease (MCD). KSHV expresses several proteins that modulate host cell signaling pathways. One of these proteins is viral interleukin-6 (vIL-6), which is a homolog of human IL-6 (hIL-6). vIL-6 is able to prevent apoptosis and promote proinflammatory signaling, angiogenesis, and cell proliferation. Although it can be secreted, vIL-6 is mainly an intracellular protein that is retained in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). We performed affinity purification and mass spectrometry to identify novel vIL-6 binding partners and found that a cellular ER chaperone, hypoxia-upregulated protein 1 (HYOU1), interacts with vIL-6. Immunohistochemical staining reveals that both PEL and KS tumor tissues express significant amounts of HYOU1. We also show that HYOU1 increases endogenous vIL-6 protein levels and that HYOU1 facilitates vIL-6-induced JAK/STAT signaling, migration, and survival in endothelial cells. Furthermore, our data suggest that HYOU1 also modulates vIL-6's ability to induce CCL2, a chemokine involved in cell migration. Finally, we investigated the impact of HYOU1 on cellular hIL-6 signaling. Collectively, our data indicate that HYOU1 is important for vIL-6 function and may play a role in the pathogenesis of KSHV-associated cancers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9429-9441
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number16
StatePublished - 2014


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