Ca2+/S100 proteins regulate HCV virus NS5A–FKBP8/FKBP38 interaction and HCV virus RNA replication



Ryoji Kobayashi, MD, PhD, Department of Signal Transduction Sciences, Kagawa University Faculty of Medicine, 1750-1, Ikenobe, Miki-cho, Kita-gun, Kagawa 761-0793, Japan

Tel: +81-87-891-2249

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Background & Aim

FKBP8/FKBP38 is a unique FK506-binding protein with a C-terminal membrane anchor and localizes at the outer membranes of mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum. Similar to some immunophilins, such as FKBP51, FKBP52 and Cyclophilin 40, FKBP8/FKBP38 contain a putative Calmodulin-binding domain and a tetratricopeptide-repeat (TPR) domain for the binding of Hsp90. Both Hsp90 and the non-structural protein 5A (NS5A) of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) interact specifically with FKBP8/FKBP38 through its TPR domain, and the ternary complex formation plays a critical role in HCV RNA replication. The goal of this study is to evaluate that the host factor inhibits the ternary complex formation and the replication of HCV in vitro and in vivo.


S100 proteins, FKBP38, FKBP8, HCV NS5A, Hsp90, and calmodulin were expressed in E.coli and purified. In vitro binding studies were performed by GST pull-down, S-tag pull-down and surface plasmon resonance analyses. The effect of S100 proteins on HCV replication was analysed by Western blotting using an HCV NS3 antibody following transfection of S100 proteins into the HCV replicon harbouring cell line (sO cells).


In vitro binding studies showed that S100A1, S100A2, S100A6, S100B and S100P directly interacted with FKBP8/FKBP38 in a Ca2+-dependent manner and inhibited the FKBP8/FKBP38–Hsp90 and FKBP8/FKBP38–NS5A interactions. Furthermore, overexpression of S100A1, S100A2 and S100A6 in sO cells resulted in the efficient inhibition of HCV replication.


The association of the S100 proteins with FKBP8/FKBP38 provides a novel Ca2+-dependent regulatory role in HCV replication through the NS5A–host protein interaction.