Viral proteins Apoptin and PCV-1 VP3 selectively cause apoptosis in cancerous cells. The first 315 bps of PCV-1 VP3 share homology with apoptin, the second 306 bps (Tail), are non-homologous to apoptin. Apoptin undergoes nuclear localization in cancerous cells, where PCV-1 VP3 is cytoplasmically localized, due to a strong nuclear export sequence in the ‘Tail”. To determine if nuclear localization was necessary for apoptin to induce apotosis, the “Tail” of PCV-1 VP3 was fused to apoptin. The fused protein was transfected into H1299 lung cancer cells. Localization and apoptosis studies were done. It was found that the fused protein localized to the cytoplasm but did not induce apoptosis, implying that nuclear localization may be a critical step in the induction of apoptosis by apoptin.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Biology and Biotechnology
Major Qualifying Project
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Chemistry and Biochemistry