Published in Cancer Detection and Prevention 2000; 24(1):46-52.

Multifunctional Activity of Recombinant p14 on Lymphoid Cell Cultures

A. Pugliese, 1 D. Torre, 2 C. Cantamessa, 1 A. Saini, 1 M. Pes, 1, and A. Savarino MD 1

1Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, Section of Infectious Diseases, University of Turin; Amedeo di Savoia Hospital 2Division of Infectious Diseases, Regional Hospital of Varese, Italy

Address all correspondence to: Prof. Agostino Pugliese, M.D., Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, Section of InfectiousDiseases, University of Turin. ‘Amedeo di Savoia” Hospital, Corso Svizzera 164, 10149—Torino, ITALY, Tel: +39011 4393 865,Fax: +39 011 4393882.

ABSTRACT Some effects of recombinant p14, a protein encoded by the tat gene of immunodeficiency virus typeI (HIV- I), were investigated on T lymphocytic cell cultures. In particular, we detected p14 adsorption to cells, therate of cell replication, the expression of fibronectin (FN) and its receptor (FNR) and of cell surface CD4 antigen inHlV-l-infected or uninfected MT-4 and H9 cells, treated with p14. Moreover, we evaluated the proportion of apoptotic cells in uninfected and chronically infected H9 cells in the presence of p14 and the modulation of interferon(IFN) production induced by p14 in PBMC of healthy subjects. The results obtained demonstrate that p14 exertsmultifunctional activities on HIV-l infected and uninfected cells. In particular, this protein interacts in a specificmanner with cell surface, especially with that of infected cells, and enhances the expression of FN and FNR but notthat of the CD4 lymphocyte antigen. Moreover, p14 increases cell replication, IFN production and can exert a slightmodulation of apoptosis. We also propose a model to explain a possible role in HIV-l infection of the effects ofexogenous p14.

KEY WORDS: HIV-1 infection, fibronectin (FN), fibronectin receptor (FNR), Tat gene.

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