The subcellular localization of herpes simplex virus tegument proteins during infection is varied and complex. By using viruses expressing tegument proteins tagged with fluorescent proteins, we previously demonstrated that the major tegument protein VP22 exhibits a cytoplasmic localization, whereas the major tegument protein VP13/14 localizes to nuclear replication compartments and punctate domains. Here, we demonstrate the presence of a second minor population of VP22 in nuclear dots similar in appearance to those formed by VP13/14. We have constructed the first-described doubly fluorescence-tagged virus expressing VP22 and VP13/14 as fusion proteins with cyan fluorescent protein and yellow fluorescent protein, respectively. Visualization of both proteins within the same live infected cells has indicated that these two tegument proteins localize to the same nuclear dots but that VP22 appears there earlier than VP13/14. Further studies have shown that these tegument-specific dots are detectable as phase-dense bodies as early as 2 h after infection and that they are different from the previously described nuclear domains that contain capsid proteins. They are also different from the ICP0 domains formed at cellular nuclear domain 10 sites early in infection but, in almost all cases, are located in juxtaposition to these ICP0 domains. Hence, these tegument proteins join a growing number of proteins that are targeted to discrete nuclear domains in the herpesvirus-infected cell nucleus.
|Pages (from-to)||10365 - 10373|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Virology|
|Publication status||Print publication - 15 Oct 2002|