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PLoS pathogens

A distinct role of Riplet-mediated K63-Linked polyubiquitination of the RIG-I repressor domain in human antiviral innate immune responses.


PMID 23950712

Abstract

The innate immune system is essential for controlling viral infections, but several viruses have evolved strategies to escape innate immunity. RIG-I is a cytoplasmic viral RNA sensor that triggers the signal to induce type I interferon production in response to viral infection. RIG-I activation is regulated by the K63-linked polyubiquitin chain mediated by Riplet and TRIM25 ubiquitin ligases. TRIM25 is required for RIG-I oligomerization and interaction with the IPS-1 adaptor molecule. A knockout study revealed that Riplet was essential for RIG-I activation. However the molecular mechanism underlying RIG-I activation by Riplet remains unclear, and the functional differences between Riplet and TRIM25 are also unknown. A genetic study and a pull-down assay indicated that Riplet was dispensable for RIG-I RNA binding activity but required for TRIM25 to activate RIG-I. Mutational analysis demonstrated that Lys-788 within the RIG-I repressor domain was critical for Riplet-mediated K63-linked polyubiquitination and that Riplet was required for the release of RIG-I autorepression of its N-terminal CARDs, which leads to the association of RIG-I with TRIM25 ubiquitin ligase and TBK1 protein kinase. Our data indicate that Riplet is a prerequisite for TRIM25 to activate RIG-I signaling. We investigated the biological importance of this mechanism in human cells and found that hepatitis C virus (HCV) abrogated this mechanism. Interestingly, HCV NS3-4A proteases targeted the Riplet protein and abrogated endogenous RIG-I polyubiquitination and association with TRIM25 and TBK1, emphasizing the biological importance of this mechanism in human antiviral innate immunity. In conclusion, our results establish that Riplet-mediated K63-linked polyubiquitination released RIG-I RD autorepression, which allowed the access of positive factors to the RIG-I protein.

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