HIV-1 Nef protein contributes essentially to the pathology of AIDS by a variety of protein-protein-interactions within the host cell. The versatile functionality of Nef is partially attributed to different conformational states and posttranslational modifications, such as myristoylation. Up to now, many interaction partners of Nef have been identified using classical yeast two-hybrid screens. Such screens rely on transcriptional activation of reporter genes in the nucleus to detect interactions. Thus, the identification of Nef interaction partners that are integral membrane proteins, membrane-associated proteins or other proteins that do not translocate into the nucleus is hampered. In the present study, a split-ubiquitin based yeast two-hybrid screen was used to identify novel membrane-localized interaction partners of Nef. More than 80% of the hereby identified interaction partners of Nef are transmembrane proteins. The identified hits are GPM6B, GPM6A, BAP31, TSPAN7, CYB5B, CD320/TCblR, VSIG4, PMEPA1, OCIAD1, ITGB1, CHN1, PH4, CLDN10, HSPA9, APR-3, PEBP1 and B3GNT, which are involved in diverse cellular processes like signaling, apoptosis, neurogenesis, cell adhesion and protein trafficking or quality control. For a subfraction of the hereby identified proteins we present data supporting their direct interaction with HIV-1 Nef. We discuss the results with respect to many phenotypes observed in HIV infected cells and patients. The identified Nef interaction partners may help to further elucidate the molecular basis of HIV-related diseases.
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