The role of protein kinase A regulation of the E6 PDZ-binding domain during the differentiation-dependent life cycle of human papillomavirus type 18

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • Craig P Delury
  • Claire D James
  • Siaw Shi Boon
  • Lawrence Banks
  • Gillian L Knight

Colleges, School and Institutes


Human papillomavirus (HPV) E6 proteins of high-risk alpha types target a select group of PSD95/DLG1/ZO1 (PDZ) domain-containing proteins by using a C-terminal PDZ-binding motif (PBM); an interaction that can be negatively regulated by phosphorylation of the E6 PBM by protein kinase A (PKA). Here, we have mutated the canonical PKA recognition motif that partially overlaps with the E6 PBM in the HPV18 genome (E6153PKA), and compared the affect of this mutation on the HPVl8 life cycle in primary keratinocytes with the wild type genome, and with a second mutant genome that lacks the E6 PBM (E6ΔPDZ). Loss of PKA recognition of E6 was associated with increased growth of the genome-containing cells relative to cells carrying the wild type genome, and upon stratification, a more hyperplastic phenotype, with an increase in the number of S phase competent cells in the upper suprabasal layers, whilst the opposite was seen with the E6ΔPDZ genome. Moreover, the growth of wild type genome-containing cells was sensitive to changes in PKA activity and these changes were associated with increased phosphorylation of the E6 PBM. In marked contrast to E6ΔPDZ genomes, the E6153PKA mutation exhibited no deleterious effects on viral genome amplification or expression of late proteins. Our data suggests that the E6 PBM function is differentially regulated by phosphorylation in the HPV18 life cycle. We speculate that perturbation of protein kinase signalling pathways could lead to changes in E6 PBM function, which in turn could have bearing on tumour promotion and progression.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9463–9472
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number18
Early online date26 Jun 2013
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2013