UnlabelledWe recently demonstrated that a soluble protein, Gas6, can facilitate viral entry by bridging viral envelope phosphatidylserine to Axl, a receptor tyrosine kinase expressed on target cells. The interaction between phosphatidylserine, Gas6, and Axl was originally shown to be a molecular mechanism through which phagocytes recognize phosphatidylserine exposed on dead cells. Since our initial report, several groups have confirmed that Axl/Gas6, as well as other phosphatidylserine receptors, facilitate entry of dengue, West Nile, and Ebola viruses. Virus binding by viral envelope phosphatidylserine is now a viral entry mechanism generalized to many families of viruses. In addition to Axl/Gas6, various molecules are known to recognize phosphatidylserine; however, the effects of these molecules on virus binding and entry have not been comprehensively evaluated and compared. In this study, we examined most of the known human phosphatidylserine-recognizing molecules, including MFG-E8, TIM-1, -3, and -4, CD300a, BAI1, and stabilin-1 and -2, for their abilities to facilitate virus binding and infection. Using pseudotyped lentiviral vectors, we found that a soluble phosphatidylserine-binding protein, MFG-E8, enhances transduction. Cell surface receptors TIM-1 and -4 also enhance virus binding/transduction. The extent of enhancement by these molecules varies, depending on the type of pseudotyping envelope proteins. Mutated MFG-E8, which binds viral envelope phosphatidylserine without bridging virus to cells, but, surprisingly, not annexin V, which has been used to block phagocytosis of dead cells by concealing phosphatidylserine, efficiently blocks these phosphatidylserine-dependent viral entry mechanisms. These results provide insight into understanding the role of viral envelope phosphatidylserine in viral infection.
ImportanceEnvelope phosphatidylserine has previously been shown to be important for replication of various envelope viruses, but details of this mechanism(s) were unclear. We were the first to report that a bifunctional serum protein, Gas6, bridges envelope phosphatidylserine to a cell surface receptor, Axl. Recent studies demonstrated that many envelope viruses, including vaccinia, dengue, West Nile, and Ebola viruses, utilize Axl/Gas6 to facilitate their entry, suggesting that the phosphatidylserine-mediated viral entry mechanism can be shared by various enveloped viruses. In addition to Axl/Gas6, various molecules are known to recognize phosphatidylserine; however, the effects of these molecules on virus binding and entry have not been comprehensively evaluated and compared. In this study, we examined most human phosphatidylserine-recognizing molecules for their abilities to facilitate viral infection. The results provide insights into the role(s) of envelope phosphatidylserine in viral infection, which can be applicable to the development of novel antiviral reagents that block phosphatidylserine-mediated viral entry.