Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 16285885
Human T-cell leukemia virus type 1 and type 2 are related human retroviruses. HTLV-1 is the etiological agent of the Adult T-cell Leukemia/Lymphoma and of the Tropical Spastic Paraparesis/HTLV-1 Associated Myelopathy, whereas, HTLV-2 infection has not been formally associated with any T-cell malignancy. HTLV-1 and 2 genomes encode, respectively, the Tax1 and Tax2 proteins whose role is to transactivate the viral promoter. HTLV-1 and HTLV-2 Tax sequences display 28% divergence at the amino acid level. Tax1 is a shuttling protein that possesses both a non canonical nuclear import (NLS) and a nuclear export (NES) signal. We have recently demonstrated that Tax1 and Tax2 display different subcellular localization and that residues 90-100 are critical for this process. We investigate in the present report, whether Tax2 also possesses a functional NES.